Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has revealed that securing Champions League football was vital in keeping recently voted PFA Player of the Year Luis Suarez. The Uruguayan forward has been one of the standout performers in world football, netting 30 goals in 31 games following his dubious suspension for biting Branislav Ivanovic last year.
Rodgers said that:
“His loyalty in staying at Liverpool, to continue to fight for the club to get us there, is remarkable really. Hopefully he gets the rewards for that with those big European nights next season.
“I’ve convinced players to stay and enjoy the style of football, which they do, but they also want to be competing in the best competitions.”
Luis Suarez made an effort to publicly reveal his unrest on Merseyside during the summer transfer window, but Liverpool rebuffed offers including Arsenal’s now infamous 40 million and £1 offer which stemmed from false contract information. The club’s lack of European competition was a major reason Liverpool’s number 7 was so desperate to leave, however his methods and antics during the summer resulted in being forced to train alone and pictures emerged of a teary-eyed Suarez leaving Melwood, Liverpool’s training facility, presumably after being told he was not leaving.
Suarez signed a new contract in December which made him the club’s highest earner, but Brendan Rodgers and FSG will be well aware that major clubs in Europe may well test Suarez’ reslove in staying at Anfield next season, even with Champions League qualification secured.