Will Suarez part ways with Liverpool in the summer? – perhaps the most uncomfortable question for Liverpool fans at this time! After repeatedly denying any intentions of leaving the club for Champions League football, in his recent interview with Marca – Suarez admitted to reconsidering his position at the end of the season.
This is actually the first time that Suarez has opened up about looking beyond Anfield. Quite reasonably so, he is currently the second highest scorer in the Premier League with a tally of 17 goals, as Liverpool sits at 9th position. In contrast, Robin van Persie – the highest scorer in the League, has 19 goals to his name, while Man United sit on the 1 st position 29 Points above Liverpool. The contrast highlights how indispensable Luis is to the under-performing Liverpool at this time and that his departure could literally derail the Brendan Rodgers revolution at the club.
“We will see at the end of the season what Liverpool’s position is – we’re not the Liverpool of old”
Suarez however may not wish to invite the slack of the Liverpool faithful, the way Fernando Torres did when he moved to a bigger club. One can still find him talking about Liverpool on the international breaks, about how he was kept in the dark and the fact that the complete truth about his departure is not known to the public. Toress’ infamous exit not only dented his confidence, it even took the toll on the brand “Torres” – that earns the player sponsorship worth in Million every year. Suarez, at 26, would not want to have the folly and might want a silent and respectful exit. His calmness over the matter only makes one more suspicious about the ulterior motives, if they actually exist. Or it could be that the player might want to negotiate a hefty contract on the behest of leaving the club.
Speculations are rift over whether Fenway would want to book a profit from his sale after not being in a position to qualify for Champions League in the current season. Not Qualifying into the Champions League would impact the revenue by around 30 million pounds.
Suarez’s reputation has always been under question, be it the Racism incident against Evra or the recent handball incident when the media marked him as a ‘cheat’. FSG and Standard Chartered have had a difficult time marketing Suarez and his volatile nature has not helped.
The player has a release clause of around 40 million pounds and if a suitor approaches John Henry with that money, Liverpool might be tempted to sell out.
Suitors – Bayern Munich, Man City
No Champions League next season not only makes Liverpool a less attractive destination for the top talent across Europe, it even makes their Star players more poachable.
Manchester City, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Chelsea will be out in the market, as they are expected to go through managerial changes.
Bayern might see the most changes with Pep Guardiola taking over the reins from Jupp Heynckes. Notably, Guardiola and Suarez share the same agent and the player had expressed his desire to play under Guardiola while he was managing Barcelona.
Mourino’s exploits with Real Madrid seem to come to an end this summer. Going by the rumours, Mourinho could be heading back to Chelsea or even PSG. Invariably, this could begin a merry-go-round of transfers between several clubs as the manager would want to mark an impression on the squad with players that are suited to him.
After the disappointing performance in the Champions League, Mancini might be off from Man City, which seems to be the most realistic threat to Liverpool. That being said, Anzi and PSG, have money to offer that no club can reject.
Suarez is indispensable in his role at Liverpool. Before Gerrard’s recent surge in form , Suarez was literally carrying the team single handedly. He is essentially a match winner – with the ability to turn the game any moment, with a nutmeg or an outer-foot strike from 20 yards. His unpredictable movement in and around the 18 yard box is a nightmare for the opposition defenders.
Perhaps, other than making his team pass and retain possession , Brendan Rodgers’ biggest accomplishment at Liverpool is the discovery of the partnership between Suarez and Sturridge. In the last three games that the duo have played together, they have displayed a telepathic understanding between themselves. The shambolic defeat at the Europa League against Zenit St P’sbg , actually highlights the importance of this partnership. In fact Suarez was largely ineffective without any support up front.
The 40 Million that Rodgers would acquire from Suarez, if it comes to that, will have to be re-utilized. Tactically, Liverpool like to push their full backs – trying to get around the by line, while Downing , Henderson and Lucas maintain the defensive balance. On other occasions, Gerrard tries to connect with Suarez through the middle. In retrospect, Rodgers’ current system relies heavily on Suarez and his ability to take on defenders individually which allows the midfielders to stay deep.
Finding a like for like replacement for Suarez will be tough and therefore Rodgers might have to replace two to three players and reorganize his team according to the new system, without Suarez.