A brief browse of the back pages of national newspapers this week may have Liverpool supporters bracing themselves for another summer transfer saga surrounding the Premier League’s top scorer Luis Suarez.
Last summer it was Arsenal’s now infamous £40,000,001 bid to bring the Uruguayan forward to the Emirates Stadium - a proposal that had Reds owner John W Henry questioning what the Gunners were smoking.
Since then a lot of things have changed – Liverpool are now title favourites, are certain to qualify for the Champions League (which had previously been a matter of contention for the striker) and, above all, Suarez signed a new contract with the club.
This was no ordinary contract, either – the 27-year-old put pen to paper on a deal worth an incredible £10 million a year or £200,000 per week (depending on which reports you read) to keep him at Anfield until 2018. That’s a new bumper four-year contract, and that’s that.
However, the press will still make their noises insufferably – this week I read that Real Madrid are preparing a £70 million plus player exchange deal to bring Suarez to the Bernabeu, and that Liverpool could ‘cash in’ on their striker this summer if they win the title.
Don’t bat an eyelid is my humble advice – if you are a Liverpool fan, you shouldn't devote any more than an eye-roll to these stories because they really are fiction.
It is conceivable that Madrid could launch a bid to sign him, but there is absolutely no way Henry will sanction selling off the club’s best player after the kind of success they have had this term. Moreover, manager Brendan Rodgers will not consider unsettling the players and the balance in the team by bringing in someone new at the cost of letting their talisman go.
At any rate, even if the club were open to it, I think Suarez is looking happier than ever on Merseyside – his form would suggest he is enjoying his football, relishing playing under Rodgers and looking forward to continued success with Liverpool.
Perhaps the prospect of joining the mighty Madrid would appeal to him, but with Liverpool in the Champions League now, likely title winners this term and certainly challengers next term, along with his four years left on his deal, it is very doubtful that the player will be trying to force through a move or engineer it the way he looked open to doing last summer.
True, Madrid could come in with a world-record offer, but so could anyone. I suspect the answer from Liverpool is going to remain the same. Luis Suarez is not for sale, he has a long-term contract with the club, he is happy at Anfield, and the Reds consider him the key to their continued success. End of story.