The England international has stated that the Reds’ chances of breaking back into the top four would take a major hit should the striker leave Anfield.
Speaking in an interview with The Independent, Gerrard confessed that he has tried to convince wantaway forward Luis Suarez to stay at the Merseyside club, and stressed the importance of the South American on Liverpool’s top-four hopes.
“Where we sit actually right now, it all depends on what decision Luis Suarez makes in the next few weeks. If we lose him then the challenge becomes even more difficult. It's that simple."
Suarez has been linked with a move to Arsenal, who are looking to recruit players to help them challenge for the Premier League title again next season. Gerrard feels that selling their prize asset to a rival would be ill-advised, regardless of the fee on offer.
"If he goes to Arsenal, it obviously makes our season that little bit more difficult. It strengthens them an awful lot and they are our rivals for a top-four position. From the club's point of view it doesn't make sense at all, no matter how much money is put on the table."
Gerrard continued by stating that Suarez was the third best player in the world after Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo – high praise indeed.
With Suarez reportedly considering leaving Merseyside in search of Champions League football, Gerrard stated that if he must be sold, it should be to a foreign club.
"If he was to go abroad to a Madrid or Barcelona I would totally understand it. He's a South American. He's good enough to play in either of those teams. From a family point of view, it's where they all want to be. If I was him I would wait for one of those two clubs because I think he's good enough to play for them."
Whether Gerrard’s words will have any impact on Suarez’s decision-making process remains to be seen. The Uruguayan’s future has been one of the hot topics of this summer’s transfer window, however Liverpool are reluctant to sell the star forward.
Real Madrid were initially touted as a major suitor for the former Ajax man’s services, however the Spanish giants appear to have shifted their focus to securing the signature of Tottenham star Gareth Bale.
Arsenal, who are in a financially stable position after years of prudence by Arsene Wenger, have also been identified as a side with a real interest in Suarez. It is believed that the north Londoners have made enquiries over the striker’s availability, but that it will take more than £40 million to convince Liverpool to contemplate selling.
Suarez himself will inevitably have a key say in where he plays his football next season, and whether the South American attacker requests a transfer or not could be the deciding factor over his fate.
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