Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva believes Luis Suarez was the best player in the Premier League last season.
The controversial Uruguayan international was suspended for biting Branislav Ivanovic during the campaign, but still notched 23 Premier League goals in just 33 appearances.
Despite missing out on the Premier League Golden Boot to Robin Van Persie and the PFA Players’ Player of the Year award to Gareth Bale, teammate Lucas believes it was form that made him the best player in the division.
Michael Carrick, Eden Hazard and Juan Mata were three of the other standout performers last term, and the other names that comprised the shortlist for the best player in the English top flight last term.
"Luis was the best player in the Premier League last year, so having him in our side again this season is just a real boost for all the team and the squad,” said Lucas following the former Ajax striker’s return to action.
"He's really happy to be back. He's always been training with us, but now he's available to help us in the official games, it will be much better. We just hope he can have the same season that he had last year because he was a really important player for us.
"If he does the same as last season, we will have a better chance to achieve what we want to achieve. He's just given us more confidence. The squad that we had without him was a good one, but with him back in it, we'll be even better. He's one of the best in the world."
The Brazilian international is also in no doubt that the Reds fans still love Suarez, who has made an instant impact on return to the first team at Anfield.
He bagged a brace in the win over Sunderland at the weekend, after hitting the bar for Brendan Rodgers’ side in their League Cup defeat to Manchester United.
"The fans know Suarez very well. He's been here for two or three years and we all know how he is,” added the Liverpool star.
"He's a fighter and he will do everything he can to help the team, just as he did last year and the season before. That's what everyone expects from him and I don't think he's thinking any other way.
"He just wants to play his game and score goal and help his teammates because he has a really good relationship with everyone here at Melwood."