Quotes on: Luis Suarez

Team-mates

“I don’t think anyone ever looks forward to playing against Luis Suarez, he is a fantastic talent and a very dangerous player. He is a fantastic team mate, probably the best player I have played with.” Steven Gerrard

“I think he’s the best striker in the world, I think he’s better than Neymar. He’s part of a three; Messi, Ronaldo and Suarez, certainly the last two years.” – Jamie Carragher

“Suarez is the best striker in the world and I think he has now made it into the world’s best three with Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. He has maybe made this Barça even better than Pep Guardiola’s which I thought was impossible and he has helped Messi back to number one in the world. The task for him now is to become the number one himself and I think he has the talent to do it.” – Jamie Carragher

“He is simply one of the greatest players who ever played for the club (Liverpool). Talk about all-time greats and he is in the top five. The goals he scored and the way he played was mind-blowing. You could see he was going to be great the moment he walked into Melwood and got on the training pitch. [ . . . ] Luis came in and just took our breath away on the training pitch. You could see we had a top, top talent and that talent reached a pinnacle for Liverpool at the end of 2013 and in the first half of 2014. He was unplayable at times. Perfect.” – Jamie Carragher

“I really liked Luis, player, everything. He had everything. He was never injured, just wanted to play all the time, just got on with it.” – Jordan Henderson

“He never stops running, chasing and pressing the defenders. To have a player like him playing against you is a nightmare as you never have any time.” — Lucas

“I think he is an extraordinary person and I think he can make the difference on his own. He dribbles past two or three players on his own, which is difficult to find in today’s game. He is a natural leader and a very nice person in the dressing room. I think it is an extraordinary purchase and he will definitely make a difference.” Xavi (2014)

“He has goals in his blood. I have said that more will come. He will start scoring goals. He reminds me a bit, with his killer instinct to damage other teams, of Samuel Eto’o, that bad mood, that personality, that persistence.” – Xavi (2014)

“He is the best out-and-out forward there is in the game today. He has so much to offer the team and it is a pleasure to play alongside him. We also have a very good relationship off the pitch and I am very happy to be sharing everything with him.” Lionel Messi

“I don’t care if he bites. I don’t care if he’s bitten before. He knows it’s not the correct way to behave but as a player he is in the top three or five strikers in the world so I am really happy to have him in my team.” – Gerard Pique (2014)

“He is a different style of player for us. We have Andres Iniesta and Xavi and they are sweet players and you can enjoy watching them on the ball, it’s easy on the eye. Not with Suarez. He fights and scraps for the ball and finally gets the goal. In training you see that ultra-competitive streak. You can kick him and he just never goes down. You pull his shirt and he still goes towards the goal. It’s true that he had a reputation in England (for diving) but you fall once in the Premier League and it sticks. I have found him to be a very fair player.” – Gerard Pique

“In training it’s unbelievable. He has got that instinct that means when there are two or three rebounds in the box, the ball will always end up at his feet and he’ll score.” – Gerard Pique

“What makes players different is their talent. Luis Suarez has arrived at the ideal team to showcase his abilities. His talent is undoubtable. He’s a complete forward and Barcelona have goals for many years to come.” Andres Iniesta

“He doesn’t mess around, he bears down on you and takes players on like a street footballer, which is why for me he’s the best in the world.” – Cristian Rodriguez

Managers

“Suárez was fantastic. He was running as hard at the end as at the beginning. Even in our wildest dreams we couldn’t have thought he’d settle as well as he has done. He has graced the pitch every time he has stepped on it.” – Kenny Dalglish (2011)

“He has been fantastic everywhere he has been – a huge success and fabulously entertaining. There is no reason why he won’t continue that for Barcelona.” – Kenny Dalglish (when Suarez signed for Barcelona in 2014)

“I know him since his time at Ajax. He showed what a great player he was, too good for the Dutch league, so he went to Liverpool. He had a difficult start at Barcelona but he has shown since then that he is a fantastic player.” – Ronald Koeman

“He’s a fantastic finisher, he doesn’t give a centre-half any time whatsoever, he works his socks off for the team and he’s got great quality.” – Peter Taylor

“My team [Swansea] had played against him the season before. Initially I just thought he was a pest. He was one of those boys in around and the box he’d create and provoke a reaction from a defender. Having the chance to then go in and work with him… I just felt each game he got better and better.” — Brendan Rodgers

“He [Suarez] has shown in his time at Liverpool in the last year or so that he is near unplayable. He on his own can occupy a back four with his movement and his cleverness.” – Brendan Rodgers (2014)

“For him not to be in the top three of the Ballon d’Or was incredible [ . . . ]. He left Liverpool as a world-class player and he’s gone into a Barcelona team that was already up there and made them better. Playing with that level of players as well has obviously made him a better player. He’s still young enough to win that accolade but he’s certainly up there with the best. ” – Brendan Rodgers

“If I were to have a striker in my team, apart from Lionel Messi, he’s certainly the one. [ . . . ] The only difference I see is that he plays now in a team that can maximise his ability. He’s always been creative, he’s always been a worker and how he presses the game. When he first went there people were questioning whether he was good enough and that he was there to just feed the others. He’s that type of player with his work rate and mentality that gets the respect of his team-mates very quickly.” – Brendan Rodgers

“First of all, when you speak about Luis Suarez, you have to speak about the man. Luis Suarez is one of the most beautiful men you could come across. He’s a very humble guy who works tirelessly at his profession. He is a super-professional, a family man who gives everything for his life as a footballer and his family. I had the pleasure of working with him for two years and he was incredible and as a footballer, he is the best in the world. The biggest compliment you can give Luis is that he came to an already world-class team and he made them even better. When I see them play now, Barcelona would not be the same team without Luis Suarez.” – Brendan Rodgers

“He (Suarez) is a great forward, an elite player among forwards in the world.” – Oscar Tabarez

“Luis is unpredictable, he’s hard to influence but that makes him special.” Marco van Basten

“Luis left Uruguay and moved to Dutch football, which has certain significance at a world-wide level, but his move to Liverpool put him on a higher level than many. Today he is playing a part in one of the most important trios in football history. That makes him very special. In England, he did good things in his first year, but his second year, he was unique.” – Gus Poyet

“He’s not just an old-style striker; he can also combine with his team-mates, he reads the game well and he doesn’t need many touches to score. He also has the physique which is good for us and the character which is useful for a team like us, which is colder.” – Luis Enrique

“Luis is a penalty area assassin, a killer, capable of resolving any situation that crops up in the area. If we also consider the pressure he puts on defenders by closing them down and the way he encourages the others, then he is indispensable.” – Luis Enrique 

 “He has been a goalscorer all his life and will continue to score goals.” – Luis Enrique 

“He can decide games. He’s a pure scorer, who needs very little to finish.” – Luis Enrique

“Suarez gives us a lot. What he gives us is priceless, non-negotiable. He gives us power inside the box, he’s irreplaceable. And he does a lot of good defensive work as well.” – Luis Enrique

“He has settled extraordinarily at Barcelona. He looks, not Catalan because Uruguayans could kill us, but he looks half-Catalan! What Luis Suarez does for us, not just his goals, but his work and character, is why we decided to sign him.” — Luis Enrique

Others

 “Even kicking Suarez will not stop him. Because even then, he does not stay down.” – Carlos Sanchez (River Plate winger)

“An incredible talent with a magnificent work ethic. Inspired everyone around him at Liverpool, even only briefly, and now showing his class at Barcelona.” – Alan Smith

“Luis arrived here (Ajax) with a decent reputation but he was not a big player then. In the dressing room he soon stood up and became a leader. That’s why he was special. We’ll remember him for his incredible amount of goals and what he has done for the club. Our fans were crazy about him.” – Rik van den Boog (Ajax Managing Director)

“He’s kept developing constantly. Today he’s a much-improved player compared to when he started out at Liverpool, at Nacional, in the Netherlands and even at Barcelona. He was on fire at Liverpool, but today he’s a much more complete player. True, playing alongside two colossuses [Leo Messi and Neymar] helps, but even so. Leaving aside how many goals he scores, these days he’s a guy who goes out there and makes the difference, who is the first name on the scoresheet. He’s the complete package. [ . . . ] Suarez is the standard-bearer for the national team and Uruguayan football because he plays for a side who are watched all over the world. [ . . . ] I told him to his face that he’s the best Uruguayan No9 I’ve ever seen.” – Enzo Francescoli

“I liked everything about him: he was not static, knew his way around the outside of the box and gave us a profile which we did not have.” – Andoni Zubizarreta

“Suarez has everything, he fights, great movement, he is the right age and obviously he scores goals. He gives something to the team, that especially at Barcelona is very important. It is the hard work that Samuel Eto’o used to do, not just goals.” Thierry Henry

“He is (a) player who defines the style shift (at Barcelona) and also a player who I think was very necessary for Barcelona. He is the closest thing they have had to Samuel Eto’o and the perfect player to fit with Messi and Neymar (of those available at least). Also, for all the public image of him, he’s also got a near perfect attitude. For a player of that ability and that significance, he is remarkably lacking in individual ego. Desperate to win, but not particularly worried about being at the heart of that win: no particular desperation to be the goal scorer or the superstar. Less technically gifted than (Messi and Neymar) but works, pressures, plays, stretches defences, gives physical presence.” – Sid Lowe

Barcelona's Suarez celebrates after scoring a goal against Real Madrid during their Spanish first division "Clasico" soccer match at Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona
Barcelona’s Luis Suarez celebrates after scoring a goal against Real Madrid during their Spanish first division “Clasico” soccer match at Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, March 22, 2015. REUTERS/Albert Gea

The FIFA Ban

“We know the mistakes he’s made, but there’s another side to this person. The severity was excessive. Many times you forget that the scapegoat is a person, who has rights.” – Oscar Tabarez

“I have always considered unequivocal the disciplinary interventions by the competent bodies but, at the same time, I believe that the proposed formula is excessive. Now inside me there’s no feelings of joy, revenge or anger against Suarez for an incident that happened on the pitch and that’s done. At the moment, my only thought is for Luis and his family, because they will face a very difficult period.” – Girogio Chiellini

“The Fifa sanction is shameful, they have no sensitivity towards the fans, they might as well handcuff him and throw him in Guantanamo. It hurts that they have cut short the career of a lad who is a winner. It’s an excessive suspension. Fifa cannot talk about morals to anyone. Suarez didn’t kill anyone. This is an unjust punishment, the act of an incredible mafia.” Diego Maradona

“It is my belief that when you bring a player to a football club, he becomes your responsibility. You don’t just turn you back on a player because he has done something wrong. I think you will find that Liverpool will not turn their back on Suarez, whatever the ban Fifa have decided he must serve. Sometimes, when people have something wrong with them, just because they don’t have a plaster cast on their leg, people think they don’t need help.” – Kenny Dalglish

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