Bonuses for goals and top four finish as Luiz Suarez joins Premier League's top three earners

Striker on £200k per week but contract has reduced get-out fee should Liverpool fail to reach the Champions League

Football Correspondent

Luis Suarez has become the Premier League’s third highest-paid player with a new four-year deal which will deliver him a bonus if the club achieve a top-four finish and further add-ons based on the number of goals he scores this season.

The deal is believed to increase Suarez’s salary from £120,000 a week to around £200,000 – making him the highest-paid player in the club’s history and trailing only the Manchester United pair of Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie, who command £250,000 a week each. Manchester City’s Yaya Touré commands slightly less than £200,000 basic, with add-ons potentially taking him to £240,000.

The four-and-a-half-year deal will bring Suarez no bonus for winning the Premier League this season. But it is thought to include the exit clause that the 26-year-old’s representatives were frustrated to find missing this summer, when they discovered that the fine print of the player’s contract obligated Liverpool only to inform Suarez if a Champions League club bid for him but not to let him leave for that club.

The size of bid which would now force Liverpool to sell is not known – nor can it be made public by any party to the contract, as that would hand a potential bidder knowledge of how much they have to bid. Liverpool’s owners were furious this summer when the £40m figure in the previous contract was disclosed to Arsenal, allowing them to bid that sum plus £1.

The Professional Footballers’ Association encouraged Liverpool to introduce a concrete get-out clause at the earliest available opportunity, when it arbitrated in the dispute between player and club this summer. A contract at this time is in line with the hopes they were privately expressing back then.

The new deal is a tribute to Brendan Rodgers’ powers of man-management. Prouder and less flexible managers would have struggled to heap such praise and encouragement on Suarez, who effectively accused him of reneging on a promise by refusing to let him leave this summer.

But the strong bargaining position occupied by Suarez’s representatives – who were negotiating this week for the most prolific striker in Europe and a player Liverpool are desperate not to lose in January – will have allowed them to drive a hard bargain on the level of the get-out clause. They may well have been able to force the figure down from the previous £40m while  securing the player his 67 per cent pay rise. Any get-out figure materially lower than £40m would effectively mean that Suarez is destined to leave this summer, if Liverpool fail to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

The deal reflects far more than a mercenary mind-set in the player, however. He and his representatives see what substantial strides Liverpool have taken this year under Rodgers. They feel that Liverpool are moving in the right direction. And he is a player for whom career achievements do count a great deal. With any prospect of Suarez leaving now on hold until the summer, the challenge for Rodgers will be to deliver that top-four finish. The principal owner, John W Henry, said  in the summer that “it would be very disappointing” if Liverpool did not achieve that. When it was put to him that he sounded confident on the matter he replied: “I know a little more than I did two years ago.” There is now a lot more hinging on that finish than meeting the proprietor’s expectations.

The striker, who has scored 17 goals in 11 appearances this season and is in the side to face Cardiff today, said: “I am delighted to have agreed a new deal and have my future secured for the long term. We have some great players and the team is improving. I believe I can achieve the ambitions of winning trophies and playing at the very highest level with Liverpool. My aim is to help get us there as quickly as possible.

“The backing I have received from the fans has influenced my decision,” he added. “I am so proud to represent them and do my best for them every time I pull on the shirt. We have a special relationship; they have love for me and in return I love them.”

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen
Satya Nadella: As Windows 10 is launched can he return Microsoft to its former glory?

Satya Nadella: The man to clean up for Windows?

While Microsoft's founders spend their billions, the once-invincible tech company's new boss is trying to save it
A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms
What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist? Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories

What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist?

Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories
Chinese web dissenters using coded language to dodge censorship filters and vent frustration at government

Are you a 50-center?

Decoding the Chinese web dissenters
The Beatles film Help, released 50 years ago, signalled the birth of the 'metrosexual' man

Help signalled birth of 'metrosexual' man

The Beatles' moptop haircuts and dandified fashion introduced a new style for the modern Englishman, says Martin King
Hollywood's new diet: Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?

Hollywood's new diet trends

Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?
6 best recipe files

6 best recipe files

Get organised like a Bake Off champion and put all your show-stopping recipes in one place
Ashes 2015: Steven Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Middlesex bowler claims Ashes hat-trick of Clarke, Voges and Marsh
Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Atwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years