LUIS Suarez has talked of the political power wielded by bitter rivals Manchester United, and the effects it has on the game in England, and the country’s media.
Speaking to RR Gol, the TV show screened on VTV (a Uruguayan sports channel), the Liverpool striker discussed how the Patrice Evra affair effected his personal life, and the support given to him by the club; reserving special praise for Reds captain Steven Gerrard.
“It was so hard what happened to me. I don’t show my emotions on the field, but outside I do – and I cried a lot with all the Evra stuff,” Suarez explained.
“The trial (disciplinary hearing) week was so complicated for me. My wife and I cried a lot during that week.”
The interviewer then pointed to claims United had used their political power to influence how the race row was perceived, then manipulated by the British media, to which Suarez answered:
“People at the club are sure that it was a way that Manchester United used to put me out of the team and stop Liverpool.
“But in England, Man United has this political power, and you have to respect that and shut your mouth.”
Specifically, on the ‘non-handshake’ event at Old Trafford, Liverpool’s number 7 added:
“It was a misunderstanding, what happened between me and Evra at Old Trafford when we were to shake hands. In fact, I think it was all arranged against me again, as it had happened with the punishment.
“I promised my wife, the manager and the directors that I was going to shake my hand with Evra. ‘Why not?’, I thought, because I had no problems with him.
“The media in England showed the moment when I passed in front of him, but they didn’t see that he had his hand low before. Only the media in Uruguay and Spain showed that I wanted to shake his hand.”
Suarez then spoke on the huge support he received from within the club, in particular from Steven Gerrard whom he described as a remarkably “low profile” and “humble” man, for all his standing in the world game. He recounted Gerrard’s advice to him before the Old Trafford match, and said he will never forget those words:
“You are one of the best in the world, go out there and show it, and do not think about the other things.”
Although speaking honestly, the timing of those comments have been seen by many as poorly judged, with Suarez due to lead Uruguay out at Old Trafford in the Olympic Games next week.
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