Luis Suárez flatters to deceive

Jun 29 2014, 14:09 IST
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SummaryThe Uruguayan is a once-in-a-generation footballer and the game would be poorer without him. He should have finished his career as a legend, and not by letting down all those who loved him

now has to take a decision.

Just forget that Suarez’s latest crime was committed in his national team colours. It’s the Merseyside club that feeds him. And they just simply can’t allow an individual to tarnish their reputation time and again. Rodgers would be hugely disappointed. He mother-henned the mercurial Uruguayan and was relieved to see the player making all the right noises this past season on and off the field. Suarez was impeccable with his football and led the club’s revival in the Premier League. At the Melwood training base, he worked as a mentor for Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge and Jordan Henderson and helped them grow in stature. His acceptance speech at the PFA player of the year award ceremony was humble and cultured. It looked like Suarez had finally managed to rein in his animal instincts. He flattered to deceive.

Psychologists describe biting as an impulse action, borne out of insecurity. Suarez’s problem is pathological. He bares his fangs only when the chips are down and evidences in this regard are pretty clear-cut. Suarez was struggling to find a way past the Eindhoven defenders when he had attacked Bakkal. Against Chelsea, his team was losing. And during the World Cup fixture against Italy, Chiellini had him bottled up. When things are going his way, Suarez plays like ‘prince charming’, mesmerising us with his football sorcery.

But he can’t handle failures and this is why he was advised to consult a psychiatrist after the Ivanovic incident. Typical to his nature, he ignored it.

Suarez has now been banned for 48 matches since 2010 through retrospective actions and it would be too naive to talk about a mental disorder.

There are some strict do’s and don’ts in sport that everyone has to abide by. Reputation and stardom don’t matter here. Italy’s Mauro Tasotti was banned for eight matches for breaking Spain’s Luis Enrique’s nose during the 1994 World Cup. Diego Maradona was banished from the same tournament for a drug offence. Eric Cantona received a nine-month ban and was ordered 120 hours of community service by FA for his Kung-Fu kick on Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons at Selhurst Park in 1995. Zinedine Zidane was sent for community service in Bangladesh for head-butting Italy’s Marco Materazzi during the 2006 World Cup final. The Frenchman escaped a bigger punishment because he retired after that game.

Suarez, too, has been punished as per

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