Luis Suarez has suggested that media criticism and intrusion has forced him to consider his future in England, despite his continuing love for Liverpool Football Club.
The Uruguayan feels the constant attention – especially paparazzi interest – is affecting his family, and he’s worried what his young daughter feels when she hears ‘bad things about her father’.
Suarez, half way through his ban for you know what, told a radio station back home ‘if I stay it is because it is a great club but also in turn I know that it is difficult because of the harassment I get from the press’.
Of course, we can understand to a certain extent Suarez’s concerns about his public image, but he seems to have overlooked a couple of things.
It was he, not the press, who was banned for biting an opponent; and that it was he, and not the press, who was previously banned for simulation. Diving (some would say cheating) to you and me.
Constant speculation linking him to Real Madrid, amongst others, has simply added to Suarez’s anti-media stance. So maybe it is time for him to move on.
Suarez insists that neither he nor his agent have had any contact with Real, but somewhat pointedly he has said: “It is normal that it is impossible to say no to big teams for which one always dreams.”
If the Liverpool striker does decide to leave or, more importantly, Brendan Rodgers and Co decide to sell, Suarez should not expect an easier ride from the media in Spain.
If he thinks he will get better treatment he should think again. If anything, the Spanish media are even more unforgiving than their English equivalents.
Either way, Suarez’s future has certainly divided opinion on Merseyside. Many fans who have taken him to their hearts for his footballing ability want him to stay. Others say ‘sell him now and let’s move on’.
The big question is, of course, how do Liverpool replace a player of such quality; a player who carried the team at times before his latest indiscretion?
As I reported recently in on football.co.uk.’help is at hand and closer to home than some might have imagined a few months ago. And it comes in the diminutive shape of rising samba star Philippe Coutinho’.
I still stand by that comment so it will be interesting to see over the course of the next few weeks which route both player and club opt for.