Atletico Madrid striker and former Barcelona hitman Luis Suarez has laid into manager Ronald Koeman for the way he was treated last year.
Speaking in an interview with Catalan publication SPORT, as relayed by Barca Universal, Atletico Madrid forward Luis Suarez has lashed out at Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman ahead of their meeting on Saturday.
Suarez had been at Barcelona since 2014 and, alongside Lionel Messi, had been the Catalans best player for a number of years. However, the Uruguayan international saw himself get forced out of the club by Koeman and club president Joan Laporta last summer as he sealed a surprise switch to La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid.
The veteran striker has thrived since moving to the Wanda Metropolitano. At the same time, Barcelona have been going through a major turmoil with Koeman staring at the prospect of losing his job after a series of horrendous displays, the most recent one coming against SL Benfica in the UEFA Champions League earlier in the week.
Barcelona take on Atletico Madrid later tonight on Saturday as Koeman hopes to make one final attempt to salvage his job. Ahead of the meeting with the Dutchman, Suarez has laid into the 58-year-old, as well as president Joan Laporta for the way he was treated leading to his exit last year.
🗣️"It's destiny. He treated me as if I were 15 years old. I came home crying from contempt."
– Luis Suárez when asked about the possibility of Koeman being sacked by Barcelona.😬 pic.twitter.com/ueH8EzMLjM
— NairaBET (@NairaBET) October 1, 2021
“It [my departure] was the responsibility of Koeman who treated me like I was 15, and Bartomeu who leaked that I was hurting the dressing room,” the 34-year-old former Liverpool striker said.
Suarez also gave his opinion on who should succeed Koeman at Barcelona in case the ex-Everton and Southampton boss does get booted out. Former midfielder Xavi Hernandez has been heavily linked with the job at Camp Nou, but the Atletico Madrid striker insisted that the former Spanish international should wait before taking over the reins due to the current state of the club.
“I recommend Xavi to wait. This is not the ideal time to get to the club. He’s smart and he has to wait a moment. There are players he has played with and it will be difficult to make decisions about them, Certainly, I see the time when Xavi will be a coach at the Camp Nou. He will be a great coach, just like he was a player,” he said.