Any negative thoughts about Wednesday’s draw at Wigan seems to have been pushed to one side as the Luis Suarez punishment debate rages on.
Whatever course things take Suarez appeared to be unconcerned the other night. Despite fading a bit towards the end of the game, he was his usual menacing, pest like, self having a hand in most of the chances we created. He appeared to be unaffected by the boos from the Wigan fans and the occasional chants of “racist”, a sign of things to come which is perhaps why yesterday’s news tells us he will, via Liverpool lawyers, be appealing against the FA’s decision. His agent, who is someone called Alejandro Balbi, appears very optimistic.
“It seems to us absolutely out of proportion, it’s one of the hardest sanctions handed down in English football. He is firmly convinced this hard sanction can be reversed.”
Reports say the ban could be extended if the appeal fails which is interesting because as far as I know, Suarez has done nothing that is out of order since Tuesday’s announcement so why dish out further punishment?
We don’t know the details behind the FA’s decision yet but to me there appears to be two issues. Firstly, the evidence to substantiate Patrice Evra’s claim. Where is the proof? Has a player or fan come forward? Is there TV footage? If none of this has materialised then presumably Suarez has admitted saying something to Evra, that he
“called him something his team-mates at Manchester call him”
otherwise the FA would be making their decision on the basis of one players word against that of another?
If Suarez said something to Evra what did he say? Was the “something” he called Evra something that he uses with his Uruguayan teammates and did he therefore assume that Evra’s Mancs team mates call him the same thing? I guess this is where the cultural argument comes in? To me the “when in Rome” argument ie. that Suarez should act in accordance with what is acceptable in this country when he is in this country and not what goes in Uruguay is probably right. John Barnes however, sees this differently
“From a cultural point of view, (Suarez) has been backed by people from Uruguay saying the word he used is not deemed as a racist term… as much as we will say ignorance is no excuse, ignorance is an excuse, cultural differences have to be taken into consideration”.
I wonder if they were but, despite this, the FA still decided to arrive at their decision. Suarez’s lawyers and the law might not see it that way and may use this as a tool to get the appeal quashed?
As it is it looks like we will have Suarez’s services over the Christmas programme however, I guess it would be sensible to make contingency for life without him if things don’t go his way? One of the positives is that Suarez will get, what on the face of it, appears to be a good rest! From the end of last season he was heavily involved in the Copa America for what seemed to be most of the summer, surely the constant playing without a decent break will eventually take it’s toll? Having him refreshed for the run in to the end of the season might be a good thing?
It will also be an opportunity for Andy Carroll to step up to the plate and prove his critics wrong, perhaps no excuses about him being on the bench for long periods now? I also suppose there is the outside possibility that Kenny might dabble in the January window for a replacement? However, I’d be very, very surprised if this happened we’ve enough strength in depth and I’m sure Kenny and owners will be keen to use this and demonstrate that they putting their faith in the squad.
Whatever the case the club is bigger than one man. If he’s banned we will miss Suarez however, I believe we will cope and will walk on, with or without him, starting with the next match against Blackburn … and we thought we had problems!