Let me start out by stating I’m a fan of Liverpool FC. I’ve supported the Reds since 1984, when the likes of Kenny Daglish, Ian Rush and Graeme Souness led Liverpool to their fourth European championship. Through the good (5 European titles, 18 League titles) and the bad, (The tragedies at Heysel and Hillsborough) I’ve remained supportive of Liverpool FC.
But I cannot, nor will not, defend the actions of one Luis Suarez. We all know what happened by now. During the Uruguay-Italy fixture at the World Cup, Suarez bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder. The officials did not see it, and Suarez was not penalized. Not long after the gross incident, Uruguayan defender Diego Godin headed home a corner to give Los Charruas a shocking 1-0 victory. Uruguay advanced to the knockout stage, Italy are going home.
The Suarez incident made headlines around the world, and Twitter was in an uproar over the incident.
FIFA is currently investigating the incident and Suarez could be banned from International play for 2 years, the maximum sentence for a player.
I say 2 years isn’t enough. This the third time, I repeat THIRD TIME, that Suarez has bitten someone during a match. The first happened when Suarez was playing for Ajax Amsterdam. Suarez bit Otman Bakkal of PSV Eindhoven during a match in November 2010. The club suspended Suarez for two matches while the Dutch Federation added seven more games, increasing Suarez’s banishment to nine matches.
In April of 2013, Suarez was at his chomping worst again. This time the victim was Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea. The officials did not see the action, and Suarez scored the equalizing goal in stoppage time. The FA did take notice though, and banned Suarez for ten games. Suarez didn’t appeal the decision, and Liverpool also fined him an undisclosed amount.
And oh yes, there was that nasty racial incident with Patrice Evra, in which Suarez used a racial slur on the Manchester United defender, who happens to be black. Suarez denied the incident happened but the FA acted sternly, banning Suarez for eight games and fining him 40,000 pounds.
All these incidents tarnish Suarez’s legacy. He is a world-class talent that can change the course of a match with skill and precision. But far too often, he is an undisciplined, boorish cheat who resorts to dirty, uncouth tactics that have no place on the football field, or anywhere for that matter. Trust me, if someone at the office bit you on the shoulder out of anger, you would get quite upset and rightly so.
Biting is something a six-year-old child might resort to in self-defence. But a 27-year-old professional football player making millions of dollars resorting to this behaviour is unacceptable. I’ve seen Cookie Monster show better restraint around a batch of fresh cookies, than Suarez inside the 18-yard box, with a defender’s shoulder in his face.
If FIFA doesn’t come down hard on Suarez vampiric appetite, then perhaps Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Yes I watched the show. Laugh all you want.) should be called upon, and put a stake right through Suarez’s heart. The problem is Suarez may not have a heart.
I won’t have any issue if Liverpool decides to sell Suarez before the transfer window closes in September. Yes, he did lead the English Premier League with 31 goals last season. But why take a chance on a player that will most likely do something reprehensible again. If he hasn’t learned the previous three times, (four counting the racism incident with Evra) then there is no need to have him on your team.
Oh and let us all hope that Colombia ends Uruguay’s World Cup dreams in the knockout stage. I’d prefer to watch a player with the class of James Rodriguez on the biggest stage. The sport is better for it.
You can follow me on Twitter @jstar1973