Anorak

Anorak | Liverpool: Perpetual victim Luis Suarez will be playing Champions League football next season

Liverpool: Perpetual victim Luis Suarez will be playing Champions League football next season

by | 12th, June 2013

HAS the British press got it in for Liverpool’s Luis Suarez? It looks a lot like the player wants to play for Real Madrid.

The Times reports:

Suárez repeats declaration of love for Real Madrid

The paper reports Suarez’s words:

“Every player would like to play for a huge team, and Real Madrid is a huge team. But everything that has been said is just speculation, I haven’t received any concrete offers. The [English] press have made me feel bad since the moment I arrived in England. They have never judged me on how I play football, they judged me on my attitude. They said I dived, moaned, postured, they said I was racist, they said everything. They have never spoken well of me. That’s why, when people said that I could have been chosen as the best player in the Premier League, I said: ‘I’m relaxed. In England I’m never going to be given an important prize.’ ”

Suarez sounds like an ungrateful so-and-so blaming everyone else but himself and his actions for his reputation as bit of an arse. If only those pernickety English journalists hadn’t overreacted when he dived, handballed a ball into the net to score against mighty Mansfield and racially abused a black player. So much for Englishman’s sense of fairness.

But let’s see what he said in fuller terms:

“Liverpool is a club that I dreamed about playing for as a boy. I have been with great players there, they know me and I would love to continue for many more years at Liverpool. The stadium is spectacular, the fans are phenomenal: people with tattoos of me, things that I could never have imagined. After the [Evra] suspension people would come up to me, this is something that really touched me and they would say: ‘Luis forget everything and stay.’… About a week ago I was walking in a shopping center near Manchester and three or four guys asked me for a photo. While we were posing for it my wife said to me ‘Luis, get out of the photo’. She noticed they were making biting gestures. I was with my wife and my daughter. Things like that get on your nerves. My wife was on the brink of tears and the blokes ran off laughing. You get tired of stuff like that.”

If he had the wit, Suarez would turn it into a joke. But he hasn’t. Maybe that’s his problem – he just can’t express himself. Giles Smith considers that in reviewing a book about raising toddlers:

Heidi Murkoff, writing in What To Expect: The Toddler Years (with Sharon Mazel, Simon & Schuster, £16.99) urges this pragmatic response: “Don’t overreact, yell or embark on a lengthy lecture; simply explain, calmly but firmly, ‘Please don’t bite. Biting hurts.’ ” Murkoff also points out, usefully, that the instinct to bite is often “born of an inability to communicate” and advises “helping [the biter] find the words they need to express their feelings: ‘I know you feel angry. It’s OK to be angry, but it’s not OK to hurt someone because you’re angry. Let’s figure out another way to make the anger go away.’” 

Suarez was talking to the television show RR Gol. He also said:

“Ever since I arrived I have felt bad, they [the media] have never judged me for my play but with the attitude that he dives, protests, makes gestures, racism … everything. They have never spoken well of me. For that reason, when I was told I could win the Player of the Year award, I said: ‘I will not get excited as I know that I will never win an important award in England.'”

Suárez bit Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic. That earned him a 10-match ban. He racially abused Patrice Evra. Eight matches for that. Fair? No, says Suarez:

“Without any proof they gave me an eight-match ban but with Terry, where they had proof, lip-readers, they gave him four. I’m South American and I think that’s the root of all of this.”

Suarez revels in his perpetual victimhood. Liverpool, of couse, agreed with him. They all wore shirts declaring Luis as the main man. Did he have a point? Was he innocent? Rod Liddle noted:

Which is worse, for Luis Suarez to call Patrice Evra black, or for Patrice Evra to make a disparaging comment about Suarez’s sister’s vagina? Most normal people would, I think, see a certain equivalence of transgression. I suspect an equal amount of personal hurt or perhaps anger was occasioned by each snarled obscenity, although only one of them is likely to bring great opprobrium and the risk of criminal prosecution.

The Guardian does produce more of Suarez’s words than in the Times’s report. It includes this part about Real Madrid:

“My agent said to remain calm rather than quiet – remain calm and when there is concrete interest you’ll be the first to know. I’m not sure if I see myself in the white [Real kit], the only thing I know is that I have a contract. Any player would like to play for a great team and Real Madrid certainly are that. Every player wants to reach the very top and Real Madrid are at the very top, but everything that has been said is just rumours, I have had nothing concrete.”

Other parts of the same interview trickle out:

“Of course I would like to play with Cristiano Ronaldo. He’s a great player. You never know, but it’s complicated.”

And on that bite:

“I know I made a mistake, it was me, my fault, and he did not do anything to me. I was angry because I had given away a penalty for handball. I was the cause of the penalty against my team – I saw red and completely lost it. I can’t really explain it. But still people can be very cruel, and the reaction was amazing.”

Liverpool release a statement:

“Luis Suarez is not for sale. Neither Luis nor his representatives have communicated these feelings directly to Liverpool Football Club. The club remains supportive of Luis and we expect him to honour his contract.”

That sounds a lot like Suarez and Liverpool are thinking alike. Both are in denial. But only one party will be playing Champions League football next season…



Posted: 12th, June 2013 | In: Sports Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink