Luis Suarez is a quality player, no doubt about it, but the man himself seems to be suffering from a sort of God complex in the way that he continually appears to be flirting with other clubs and soliciting himself as if no one could refuse his allure.
Real Madrid may well be interested in Suarez, though there’s yet to be any concrete interest, and although Arsenal have come to the fore as an interested party, their offer is way short of Liverpool‘s valuation. Suarez is going to have to tread very carefully over the next few weeks as Liverpool aren’t desperate to offload him, and Brendan Rodgers has already stated negotiations will be conducted on their terms.
It’s all well and good for Suarez to announce he is bigger than Liverpool and he needs Champions League soccer like an addict needs a fix, but if he’s not careful, he’s in danger of concocting an untenable situation at Anfield.
Whether or not that’s Suarez’s intention is irrelevant. What’s relevant right now is that Suarez could find himself lining up for Liverpool in August alongside players who will have lost every ounce of respect for him and won’t even want to play with him. That would certainly create an unwelcome dilemma for Rodgers, who will have to decide whether he can persuade Suarez to commit to the cause for another year, or take less than the mooted £50 million he wants.
A severance may be in the best interest of both parties with Liverpool really needing to cut the poison out before it spreads any further throughout the squad and, regardless of what some fans may think, it may not actually be the disaster everyone is expecting.
Let’s use the pre-season victory over Preston North End as an example. I am aware that a warm-up game against Preston won’t constitute the most indicative of displays, but regardless of the tempo and the class of opposition, Liverpool actually looked pretty good and played well in Suarez’s absence.
After the loss of Henrikh Mkhitaryan to Borussia Dortmund, Liverpool fans only needed to watch the lively Philippe Coutinho pull the playmaking strings behind the forwards to see they really didn’t need Mkhitaryan and already have a wonderfully creative player there.
Iago Aspas proved he has real quality, and Luis Alberto also look comfortable in attack during the preseason friendly.
Rodgers now has an abundance of forward players and a much more secure defense than he was afforded last year, so there’s much to look forward to for Liverpool fans this season. When Suarez was banned for eight games for racially abusing Patrice Evra, other players came to the fore and stepped up, so they have previously proved they aren’t necessarily reliant on Suarez.
Should his absence become permanent, there’s no reason for concern as Liverpool are looking far more resilient than they have been in recent years.