Jonjo Shelvey has backed Lucas Leiva to have an immediate impact in the first-team once he makes his latest return from injury in the coming weeks.
Lucas was injured early against Manchester City in the first home Premiership game of the season back in August and was replaced by Shelvey in that game.
“I think he has been a big miss,” Shelvey said.
“In the holding role, his tenacity and willingness to get the ball back and then the way he is able to keep it simple has been missed.”
“I think Joe Allen has done very well in his absence but Lucas is a brilliant player. Over the last few years he has been tremendous. Ever since he came to this club he has been superb.”
“You see what he does in training every day. He’s so determined to get back playing and when he returns he is going to be a great asset to the squad.”
Brendan Rodgers has stated that he hopes to see Lucas back in the first-team mix soon, but he will not be risking him against Swansea in Wales on Sunday afternoon.
Shelvey will certainly hope to be involved after scoring another Europa League goal against Young Boys on Thursday evening.
After beating Wigan 3-0 last Saturday, Shelvey is feeling confident that his side can push on and challenge for a Champions League place this season.
“Swansea pass and move so it will be a good footballing game on a big pitch,” he said. “We’ve got to get in their faces and let them know that we are the team not to be underestimated this time.”
“The other teams’ results always come in when we get off the pitch and you always go and have a look,” he said. “But I don’t think we can pay too much attention to what other teams are doing at this stage because there is still a long way to go in the season.
“But at the end of the season, I think we will be in and around the top four.”