The Anfield manager is irate with the Uruguayan forward’s comments, and claims no promises of a transfer were made last summer.
Brendan Rodgers has reacted angrily to Luis Suarez’s comments in the press this week, in which the South American attacker claimed his manager told him he could leave Liverpool if they failed to finish in the top four. The Uruguay international is eager to move to Arsenal this summer, and he has pleaded with the Merseysiders to let him leave during the transfer window.
The Northern Irish boss has struck back in the war of words, and claims that Suarez has disrespected the club that brought him to England. Rodgers also claims that he gave no such assurances that Suarez could leave this summer if the Reds failed to qualify for the Champions League.
"There were no promises made – categorically none – and no promises broken," Rodgers said on Wednesday night.
"The club and his representatives had several conversations and he knew exactly where he was at.
"I think Luis knows the support he's had at the football club and that's something that's been unswerving throughout the whole of last season. Obviously the remarks I've read are bitterly disappointing but my job is bigger than that. My job is to fight and protect the club.
"I will take strong, decisive action, absolutely. There has been total disrespect of the club – this is a lack of respect of a club that has given him everything, absolutely everything. I don't believe there is a clause in his contract that says he can leave for any sort of price."
Suarez has been made to train by himself in the wake of the comments, and it looks like the previously strong bond between player and club has now been broken.
With Suarez saying an agreement allowing him to leave was made, and Rodgers denying it, there looks to be a major misunderstanding or one party is lying. Suarez becoming ostracised due to the disagreement will seemingly only strengthen his case to be sold, and speed up his departure from the club.
It is obvious that both parties are defending their respective interests. Suarez wants to play in the Champions League, and why not – he is one of the best forwards in England and deserves to play in the top tournament in Europe. Rodgers feels that Suarez has sullied Liverpool’s name with his comments, and is standing up for the club and its reputation.
Given the level of support that Liverpool pledged to Suarez over the racist remarks made to Patrice Evra, the biting of Branislav Ivanovic and other scandals that have blighted the player’s time in England, Rodgers has every right to be annoyed with the player.
Suarez’s choice to go public with his intentions undermines Liverpool and their negotiating stance should they choose to sell – he showed the club a lack of respect in doing so.
With Arsene Wenger admitting that Arsenal are waiting in the wings, it looks like Suarez’s relationship with Liverpool will come to an end – in the most acrimonious of ways.
image: © Bernard C