Liverpool v Sunderland: 'Luis Suarez is a model of brilliance - he should be crowned PFA Player of the Year, says his manager Brendan Rodgers

Uruguayan has scored 28 goals in 25 league matches this season

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Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has claimed that Luis Suarez would have won the PFA Player of the Year trophy last season, if it was not the biting incident with Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic, for which the striker was given a 10-match ban.

Suarez leads the scoring charts in the league this season, and could surpass Robbie Fowler's 18-year club record of 28 goals in a Premier League campaign if he strikes against Sunderland tonight.

Rodgers believes that the 27-year-old has improved from last season, and says that he will get even better. The Uruguayan has taken just 25 matches to score his 28 goals this season, averaging 1.12 per match.

"I think Luis was well on the way to winning [the PFA award] last season when he had that unfortunate incident, which may have curtailed that," Rodgers said.

"But this year he has been a model of brilliance. If anything he has improved on that level this year."

"I think it's been nice for people to see the other side of him. People don't see he is a real, quiet humble guy off the field who becomes a gladiator when he crosses the white line. A few people have seen the other side of him this year.

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"In this country we like to see good people doing well so certainly for him it would be a wonderful step forward in his life and his career if he gets it. He's a real strong pillar of our team. He's really dominant, that's why I had no hesitancy making him skipper against Tottenham [n December].


"Of course he makes me earn my money at times, but he is a good man and been incredible for Liverpool in my time here. He's been brilliant for me, on and off the field. I'm not sure how the voting works, but if it's down to the majority of football people, I'm sure they'd vote for Luis.

"But listen, nothing surprises me. There are some outstanding players so you never know. (Eden) Hazard has been great, and of our own boys, Steven Gerrard has been brilliant, and Jordan Henderson. But Luis consistently, from when he came back into the team, has been remarkable."