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The Premier League Needs Players Like Suarez, Not Balotelli

Date: 7th January 2013 at 5:30 pm
Written by: | Comments (15)

SO, after numerous incidents on and off the field appeared to have hammered the final nail into his coffin when, last week, he engaged in a ‘training-ground incident’ with his manager, .

Then, on Sunday evening, once again made the headlines with what ESPN’s Jon Champion mistakenly chose to call ‘the work of a cheat’.

Ignoring the fact that Suarez’s hand was already in the air when the ball bounced back up, Champion decided to side with the majority and jump on the ‘Suarez is a dirty, cheating foreigner’, just because that’s the more popular bandwagon.

It was in July 2011 that I wrote about how glad I was to have ‘characters’ in our side. At the time, I was referring to and Luis Suarez (but more so, Suarez) and referenced Manchester City’s Balotelli as an example of such a character from another side. It was – and still is – my belief that every side needs a player like this to be successful – they are either arrogant (but brilliant), slightly unhinged (but brilliant), or just a flat-out mentalist (but brilliant). I’ve changed my mind somewhat about Balotelli now, though.

We’ve seen players like these down the years be the difference for their sides and they always have an edge, whether that is a particular dirtiness, an arrogance, a penchant for the dramatic (ie. diving) but their contributions mark them out as being worth all that hassle.

Players such as Zidane, Cantona, Maradona and, to a lesser extent, players like Ginola, Zola and Henry. All of these have one thing in common: they have a fatal flaw in their character, but that only seems to add to them; to give them something extra.

Over the years, people have claimed that Rooney is one such player but, for me, he just never gives enough on the pitch to make up for his flaws. As demonstrated by the utterly unremarkable season he is having right now.

On the other hand, Luis Suarez is the embodiment of such a player. He has had his own controversial moments since his arrival, culminating in a lengthy ban, and many disparaging words spoken about him weekly by fellow players and press alike but this has only helped unite all Liverpool fans around him.

Of course, closing ranks wouldn’t be happening in such a fervent fashion were it not for the Uruguayan’s contributions on the pitch. This season alone he has found the net 19 times (many of which were created by him alone) and assisted 8 of his team mates in finding goals too.


That’s almost 27 goals he’s had a hand in, in just 27 games this season. Compare that to Balotelli and you’ll find that he has had a pretty abysmal season with just 3 goals in 15 games. Which is why all of the good will and hilarity about his craziness is now waning; he’s not amusing anymore, he’s slightly embarrassing and not even the press are reporting on him in such a fond way.

Not only that, but since ‘that incident’ and his long ban in 2012, Suarez has gone on to score 28 times with about 12 assists on top of that. So, his form since then shows that he may have learned from the incident and is showing that he appreciates the support, despite his wrong doings. Not so with Balotelli who, since that same point last year, has scored only 9 times since. The contrast really could not be greater.

Both players came to the Premier League for a similar fee and both have had their moments both in, and out, of the sun. Only Suarez though, appears to understand that fans are only forgiving of your misdemeanours, to a point. On Sunday, the reporters had a great old field day on the striker, looking to gain the popular vote by claiming he ‘showed his arm’ to the Mansfield fans and totally ignoring the fact that Suarez’s regular goal celebration involve kissing his wrist, not showing his arm to the opposition fans.

Sundays’ incident aside, Suarez has again been in the press for the wrong reasons again this season, but he is now turning this around and even his most ardent critics are turning. Some argue that, even if he is the best player in the country, his ‘crimes’ against Evra, Terry and humanity in general mean he should never be allowed to win the player of the year award but I would argue that we need mavericks like Suarez. Without him the league becomes beige.

Remember back to when Benitez and Mourinho came to the Premier League. Back then, all we had for entertainment were Ferguson and Wenger, and we all know how god-damn exciting that particular battle has been down the years. But once those two young, dynamic figures came to our biggest league, all of a sudden things were spiced up. They were riling people (more often than not, one another) up left and right, but they were also doing the business with their respective teams too, and that’s the most important ingredient.

So while Balotelli may be entertaining at times, and we’ve all had a laugh at the stories of his endeavours, this is now were his usefulness ends, it seems. Suarez is another matter however – he is a maverick and a genius, whilst also rubbing people up the wrong way, and often it’s players like him that make this league (and this club) special, and we should all be thankful for that.


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15 thoughts on “The Premier League Needs Players Like Suarez, Not Balotelli

  • blueshy
    2 years ago

    Lol you got to love the scousers with the stuff they come out with. Must be the bullet proof red tinted glasses.

    Reply
    • Hads
      2 years ago

      Sounds like that tint is turning blue

      Reply
  • bluevalentine
    2 years ago

    Load of biased twaddle! Even as a City supporter I can recognize that Shrek is an excellent player. And though I’m no defender of Mario’s antics it’s worth pointing out that whereas Suarez has the last 30 yards to himself, Balotelli (likewise a gifted player) has to compete with Tezez, Dzeko, Aguero and Nasri for 2 (or 1) striking slots.
    Anyhow, good luck with selfish Sturridge.

    Reply
  • martintuns
    2 years ago

    Don’t know why people are talking so much about Suarez’s hand ball when Thierry Henry did d same for France I think in d world cup qualifier…..it could have been anybody,Period

    Reply
  • john
    2 years ago

    I don’t support liverpool and i love suarez!

    Reply
  • ediblefunghi
    2 years ago

    Football doesn’t really need players like Suarez, he only plays for Liverpool because he tried to bite an ear off in Holland. Suarez dives cheats all the time handles the ball into the net and is a racist. He may be a good football player, but what kind of role model is he for kids? A really bad one!

    Reply
    • Idongesit
      2 years ago

      God will just av to av mercy on ppl who hate suarez. Maradona is a legend 4 doing hand of god, messi a legend for d same cause, henry against ireland did d same, i can go on and on with list of players who av scored with their hand, but coming to suarez, he is labelled a bad model and a cheat. Stop being biased

      Reply
    • bob
      2 years ago

      biased * like you always exaggerate . he didn’t try and bite off someones ear , he just gave a playful nibble .
      he has dived 3 or 4 times – i can name 100 premier league players who have done same or in bales case a lot more
      everyone at the trial including evra + the FA acknowledged he wasnt a racist
      and everybody has used their hands sometimes – absolutely everybody !

      you are the racist . you have a problem with fiesty ,determined , relentless uruguayans – hand yourself in if your so sanctimonious

      Reply
  • aderinsola
    2 years ago

    You can say any thing you want about him,the fact is there’s no player like suarez in the EPL,he is as good as messi,what a gifted player he was

    Reply
    • OnlyMe
      2 years ago

      You been on the drink? An absolutely ridiculous claim as I’m sure if given the option, Liverpool supporters would trade Suarez for Messi in a heartbeat.

      I’d trade my own mum for Messi if it meant having him on my team!!!

      Reply
      • Oluwafemi
        2 years ago

        You’ll trade ur mum 4 messi?? :-O I’ve never heard a thing like that all ?? life. So wat does she mean to U??
        Suarez is a big model and an encouragement to all football loving youth for all reason. Yes! He might always appear in the press blackbook for the wrong reason yet he kept his composure and he remains brilliant. YNWA!

        Reply
  • Wilson Matilda
    2 years ago

    Too much being made of this. It’s just because it is Suarez. Champion is a knob end- worst commentator I ever heard

    Reply
  • T.boier
    2 years ago

    @ Edible fungi,ur name says alot abt who you rily culd be…but before i move ahead,culd u be bold 2say wich club u suppot?? Well..,for u to hate suarez shows u are a manc. bt neva mind,cuz d lyks of arrogant Cantona,ill-behaved Roony,bad-temperd scholes& Ashley young d futball olympian who dive-cheats@ will all be a gud role model4ur kids…stop throwin stones @ a tree else it mite kom to fall on you…stop been a learner &grow up man

    Reply
  • bob
    2 years ago

    suarez is fantastic . i loved him for the handball for uruguay before he was a liverpool player , something like that takes balls and shows a real desire to win .

    but balotelli is also fantastic , no other premier league player has ever made me laugh as much as him .

    both are great characters and football needs characters . wouldn’t it be boring if everyone was like paul scholes ??

    Reply
  • Melon Man
    2 years ago

    The Prem needs both Balo and Suarez, they’re interesting, no need to throw the baby out with the bath water.
    And stop trying to bad mouth Balo to cover up for Suarez’s misdemenours, that’s just wrong.

    Reply

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