Anorak | Patrice Evra and Luis Suarez: All the views on two unlikable spoilt brats

Patrice Evra and Luis Suarez: All the views on two unlikable spoilt brats

by | 12th, February 2012

LIVERPOOL’S individual Luis Suarez refuses to shake the hand of Manchester United’s Patrice Evra. The media delights. All the views:

Alex Ferguson (Manchester United manager): “I couldn’t believe it. I just couldn’t believe it. I had a chat with Patrice this morning and he said, ‘I’m going to shake his hand — I have nothing to be ashamed of, I want to keep my dignity’ and then Suarez refuses. He’s a disgrace to Liverpool Football Club. Some players should not be allowed to play for Liverpool again. With the history that club’s got and in a situation like today, he could have caused a riot. I was really disappointed in that guy. That was terrible what he did. It created a tension — the referee didn’t know what to do about it, it caught him off guard. It was a terrible start to the game and a terrible atmosphere it created.”

Not biased at all.

Kenny Dalglish (Liverpool manager):“I didn’t know he [Suarez] refused to shake his hand. It’s contrary to what I was told.”

Love is blind.

Johnathan Norcroft (Sunday Times):

When Luis Suarez was about to join Liverpool from Ajax, listening to those who had coached, watched and reported on him in Holland was intriguing. Everybody agreed he was a brilliant footballer, yet there was a slight lack of warmth about the endorsements, the hint of a darker side. Well, we’ve seen it now. Suarez deserved credit for one thing yesterday: truly showing the individual he is. He has brought clarity to the debate.

What do you do with a footballer banned for biting an opponent in Holland and giving the finger to fans at Craven Cottage? The same player who gloated over a cynical handball at the World Cup and returned from an eight-match ban for racist abuse to hoof Scott Parker in the stomach.

“Everything is not as it seems,” was Suarez’s obfuscating post-match tweet. Why racially abuse somebody then refuse to shake his hand? If there’s a decent answer, football needs to hear it from Liverpool’s No 7. Otherwise you’re left thinking, when you hear Koppites sing they “just can’t get enough” of Suarez, that, as a neutral, you’ve had more than enough of this malign presence in the English game. His action ensured another United-Liverpool derby took place against a poisonous backdrop. United supporters had a vile chant about Hillsbrough and (more briefly) Liverpool fans sang about Munich.

Not all Liverpool fans love him. Many thoughtful ones can separate the player they admire and the human being whose actions are dubious. But the owner, John Henry, the rarely seen chief executive, Ian Eyre, and the football director, Damian Comolli, are unlikely to intervene. Dalglish, left to walk alone, is likely to keep saying the wrong thing in interviews and Suarez might remain unreconstructed and untamed.

Gordon Taylor (Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive):

“If the handshake was offered by Patrice Evra I thought he (Suarez) would shake it but then he diverted it away. It was anything but helpful and caused this genuine reaction. It has undermined Kenny (Dalglish) as well.”

Jim White (Telegraph):

After all, Evra, a man who had been racially abused, had been called a liar for reporting the incident, and had yet to receive anything by way of apology, was prepared to get on with it for the good of the game.

“It could have been resolved,” said Rio Ferdinand. “That it wasn’t, I’ve lost all respect for the man.”

…But then Suarez has been informed throughout all this by those around him that he had done nothing to be ashamed of, that his manager stood behind him, that the club would defend him to the hilt.

With that sort of backing, it is perhaps no wonder he behaved as if he were the wronged party here. As if he is the one due an apology. As if he is the victim of a vast and corrosive conspiracy. Rather than – as his actions here suggested – a petty, churlish curmudgeon.

Alex Kay (Daily Mail):

But back home Suarez is no tainted hero. The 25-year-old is not considered a racist; he is thought of as a national legend with a toothy grin and absurd amounts of talent by his fans, a doting family man with a huge heart by those who know him best. In their eyes, he is worth climbing up ladders for.

Rio Ferdinand (Man United player)

“I thought it was bad decision-making from their guy,” Ferdinand told MUTV. “After seeing what I saw I decided not to shake his hand. I lost all respect for the guy after that.”

Chris Wright (Pies):

Manchester United eventually won 2-1, and Evra ran around the pitch over-celebrating; beating his chest, whooping and kissing his badge – making a point of gravitating toward Suarez in the process before being shepherded aside by referee Phil Down and a clutch of stewards.

Children. The pair of them. Neither comes out of this with their dignity intact.

That sound you hear is the media milking it and licking its chops…


Posted: 12th, February 2012 | In: Sports Comments (4) | TrackBack | Permalink