Transfer Balls: Luis Saurez Leaves Liverpool To Be A FIFA Ambassador In Barcelona
TRANSFER Balls presents the Daily Luis Suarez – a round-up of news on the Liverpool striker?
Barcelona are increasing their charm offensive by seducing the player with honeyed words.
The Mirror hears Barcelona’s sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta hail Suarez:
“Suarez has shown he is humble enough to admit an error, which is very important. He has been humble enough to apologise to those he has affected, because it happened in the middle of a festival of football. In this case it’s the best thing a person can do.”
And because this is about self-aggrandising (“More than a Club”) Barcelona, there is the usual cheesy balls:
“Everyone knows that Luis is an excellent player, everyone knows last season he played in various positions in attack, but everyone also knows that he is a Liverpool player.”
See how respectful Barcelona are of contracts and other clubs. They would never unsettle another team’s players. Unless…
“Regardless of whether the club signs him or not, his quality is unquestionable. He has shown a lot of quality with Uruguay and scored more than 30 goals with Liverpool, so he has the necessary quality to play for Barca.”
Because Barcelona only buy the very best, Mr Bond. See: Alex Song.
This pursuit of Suarez is to be discussed not only in self-serving press briefings. The BBC reports:
Barcelona will begin negotiations with Liverpool on Wednesday over a deal for Reds striker Luis Suarez. Officials from both clubs will meet in London to discuss a deal for the 27-year-old Uruguay international. Suarez, who has four years remaining on his Liverpool contract, is serving a four-month ban for biting Italy’s Georgio Chiellini during the World Cup.
Liverpool are likely to accept an offer of £80m for Suarez, who joined for £22.7m from Ajax in 2011. However, Barcelona are understood to want to pay closer to £60m.
Good for Liverpool. Barcelona’s plan is, as ever, to polish the player’s ego, wheel out lots of players to say how they have posters of Suarez on their bedroom walls and knock the price down.
As for Suarez, well, he’s contrite-to-deadline, telling one and all in a prepared statement:
“The truth is that my colleague Giorgio Chiellini suffered the physical result of a bite in the collision he suffered with me. I deeply regret what occurred. I apologise to Giorgio Chiellini and the entire football family. I vow to the public that there will never again be another incident like this.”
At which point Anorak places its hands over its mouth to hold back the puke. The Football Family bilge is an FIFA invention. Suarez or whoever wrote his mea culpa is well-versed in FIFA schmooze. But if they really want that four-month ban reduced, a few million in used tenners to Mr FIFA should do it, allegedly.
And Chiellini “suffered the physical result of a bite”?
That’s an apology? No. That’s a mealy-mouthed exercise in PR.
When this is over, Suarez would make a great FIFA ambassador. He has all the necessary charm.
Anyhow, well done to Suarez who like a toddler holding a marker pen stood by a scribbled on wall and promised a bigger bun by an interfering uncle finally tells the truth.
Zubizarreta then adds:
“The fact he has had the character and the strength to go in front of everyone and say sorry says a lot about him as a person. Not every person has that strength to admit they have done something stupid. I rarely say that I am wrong so this says a lot about him, he has shown the character and strength he has…”
Sure it took a few days, camera footage of the bite and a four-month ban from football for humble Luis to tell the truth. But get a load of that character. And compare and contrast his initial response. He first told us:
“In no way it happened how you have described, as a bite or intent to be. In no way it happened how you have described, as a bite or intent to bite. After the impact … I lost my balance, making my body unstable and falling on top of my opponent. At that moment I hit my face against the player leaving a small bruise on my cheek and a strong pain in my teeth.”
Yahoo invites readers to compare Suarez’s balls with the words of New Zealand cricketer called Lou Vincent, who has just been given a life ban from his sport after admitting that he has been involved in match fixing for several years.
“I am a cheat. I have shamed my country. I have shamed my sport. I have shamed those close to me. For that I am not proud. The time has come for me to now face them like a man and accept the consequences, whatever they may be. I accept my punishment.”
We do so love a public display of contrition. It’s just lucky for ‘humble’ Luis – who the Times reminds us “effectively went on strike” after Liverpool stopped his moving to Arsenal last summer – that his apology has coincided with Barcelona flying over to buy him for a fortune.