If reports in the Daily Mirror are to be believed, Liverpool and Uruguay striker Luis Suarez could be the latest target of transfer battle between La Liga rivals Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Suarez recently opened his World Cup account by registering two goals against England, crushing their World Cup dream. This could very well be his year if he is able to bolster his side against a relatively stronger Italy to secure a place in the Round of 16.
Before the tournament he impressed critics, fans and pundits by scoring an incredible 31 goals for Liverpool, and also bagging the Golden Boot for leading the league in goals. Last summer he was the subject of a failed bid from Arsenal when he was banned for eight games after the now infamous ‘biting’ incident.
But then last year, Suarez extended his Liverpool contract with a few alleged stipulations. One of them was that he could leave the Reds if they failed to secure a top-4 league position and move to a club outside England to play in the UEFA Champions League. Another was a release clause of £70 million.
Having acquired Welsh prodigy Gareth Bale from Tottenham Hotspurs for a reported £100 million, Spanish giants Real Madrid are reportedly looking to add another world class player to their line-up – provided they are not beaten to the punch by arch-rivals Barcelona. Barcelona manager Luis Enrique is looking to re-shape the team in order to successfully challenge for the La Liga title having conceded to Atletico Madrid, earlier in the season.
Despite keeping Liverpool in the top 4, Suarez failed to get the Merseyside club what would have been their first-ever league title in the Premier League era. It was a bittersweet end to an excellent campaign.
He recently faced several of his Liverpool teammates in the World Cup group match against England, inflicting a devastating loss with two goals that were heard around the World.
Before the match, England manager Roy Hodgson reportedly challenged Suarez to prove himself as a world class player. Suarez’s two goals were his response and a personal victory for himself and his physio Walter Ferreira, who got him back into shape after a knee-surgery.
Perhaps understandingly, Suarez didn’t speak favorably of English media, who continuously underestimate him and instead of his skills on the pitch, focus more on his notorious reputation off it. It could be possible that the Uruguayan sensation is sending a message to possible suitors that he wants a life away from England, and is now open for the taking.
His agent Pere Guardiola, whose brother Pep manages German juggernauts Bayern Munich, has indicated it would be difficult for Suarez to forgo Real Madrid, if an offer were to be received.
And though the Spanish powerhouse would have to fight it out with Liverpool as they seem adamant to keep their star striker – at £70 million, it’s not to say they can’t be convinced…