Luis Suarez 'is a bit of target' in diving debate says Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre

 

Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre admits striker Luis Suarez has become a target in the debate about diving but believes everyone has to be treated equally.

The Uruguay international found himself in the spotlight again when his theatrical fall in Sunday's goalless draw at Anfield had Stoke manager Tony Pulis calling for three-match bans for those who go to ground too easily.

Reds boss Brendan Rodgers has defended his player and while Suarez has been singled out as the main culprit by recent headlines Ayre believes it would be of greater benefit to consider a wider issue.

"I think it's reputation because of what happened last season," he said.

"I am not surprised by the reaction because we all feel he is a bit of target.

"Now everything Luis Suarez does is in the spotlight.

"But if we are going to treat people because of something they do on the pitch then we should treat everybody equally.

"I am not saying that anyone in particular is targeting him, what I am saying is if there is going to be a debate - whether it's a media debate or other - then it has been to be a fair one about everybody and not about Luis Suarez, which seems to be the case."

Ayre echoed the views of Rodgers by pointing out Suarez has probably been denied more penalties than he has won.

"If you look from the start of this season, or perhaps the end of last season through to last weekend, I think it is fair to say Luis hasn't had the luck of the draw really in terms of decisions," he told Sky Sports News.

"It was proven on many occasions that he was denied what he should have been given - hopefully that changes as the season goes on.

"I just feel his style of play, the way he kind of nips in and out, he's just a target for tackles and defenders if you like.

"The most important thing is it doesn't affect Luis, he just turns it on each week and puts himself out there and he will keep going and that is what we need from him."

Former Juventus forward Alessandro del Piero claims he turned down a summer move to Liverpool out of respect for the victims of the Heysel disaster.

The 37-year-old, who was a free agent after his contract expired with the Italian champions, signed for Sydney FC despite late claims he had been approached about a move to Anfield.

"The negotiations with Sydney were already at an advanced stage and then I thought about what happened at Heysel," Del Piero told Gazzetta dello Sport.

"Juve and Liverpool have worked hard to mend their relationship, but for a lot of people it's something that can never be forgotten."

Suarez admits he needs to improve his behaviour on the pitch and not get so agitated.

The striker, currently in South America preparing for a World Cup qualifier against Argentina, was suspended for last month's defeat by Colombia and then booked for arguing with the referee on his return four days later against Ecuador.

If he gets another yellow card on Friday he will miss Tuesday's game in Bolivia.

"As the years go by you realise what you have to correct," Suarez told El Pais.

"I'm 25 and there are things I must improve, like my attitude on the pitch.

"But that's how I've played since I was a kid. I try to correct it but there are times when my anxiety makes me play that way.

"Everyone knows I gesture a lot, talk and protest, and those are things I must improve on."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
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
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us