Luis Suarez joins Barcelona: Liverpool striker is '100%' a Barcelona player, says director of sport Andoni Zubizarreta ahead of official £75m move

Suarez has completed his move to Barcelona after agreeing terms with the Spanish club

Barcelona have completed the signing of Luiz Suarez in a mammoth £75m deal from Liverpool after the club confirmed he is “100 per cent” a Barcelona player, having travelled to Spain in order to agree personal terms on his transfer..

An agreement was reached last Friday that saw Barcelona activate a £75m release clause in the Uruguayan’s contract.

But the problem for the Catalan club remains how they can unveil him, given that he is serving a four-month ban from all football-related activity except completing a transfer after he was found guilty of biting Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini.

Despite the problems, Barcelona director of sport Andoni Zubizarreta, who has spoken very positively of Suarez throughout the biting saga, is reported to have said: “He is 100 per cent a member of the club.”

Zubizarreta revealed that the club had been advised to be "discreet" about his signing given the current legal process of his ban, which is set to go to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

"Luis Suarez is a Barcelona player for all purposes but the recommendation from our lawyers has been to remain discreet," said Zubizarreta, who was asked whether the club were making moves to reduce the ban.

"Our lawyers tell us that we should be very prudent with what we say and your question is asking about something that's could only happen after certain verdicts have been reached.

"Then we'll be able to explain things better.

"But it's fact, it's true. He's 100 per cent a member of the club.

"We're speaking to our lawyers to find out the best way of defending his rights but at the moment there's nothing I can say about that."

Read more: Suarez travels to Barcelona to complete deal
Fifa confirm Suarez will not be unveiled in public
Bartomeu 'convinced' Suarez ban will be reduced

The announcement comes after president Josep Bartomeu admitted he was "convinced" that Suarez would have his four-month ban reduced, with the complete suspension from all forms of football meaning he can't step foot in any stadiums - such as the Nou Camp - to be unveiled by the club.

An official announcement on the club’s website is expected to come today.

The confirmation of the acquisition of Suarez comes in a busy summer for Barcelona, as they have already appointed a new manager in Enrique as well as three other key signings.

Enrique replaced Gerardo Martino at the end of the season, and the club moved quickly to bring in young German goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen from Borussia Monchengladback. Claudio Bravo quickly followed after the completion of Chile's World Cup campaign, while Ivan Rakitic joined from Spanish rivals  Seville.

Read more: Bartomeu 'convinced' Suarez ban will be reduced
Cruyff - Suarez is not a team player
Suarez gets record four-month ban for biting

However, the priority is now to replace the retired Carlos Puyol with another centre-back, as Zubizaretta explained.

"We're working on that at the moment," Zubizarreta added. "We thought we were going to have four centre-backs because we thought Puyol would be with us but he's not and we have to cover that position.

"Obviously we're working on buying players and we're hoping to announce a centre-back soon.

Suarez' bite on Chiellini was one of the major talking points of the World Cup Suarez' bite on Chiellini was one of the major talking points of the World Cup "About 90 per cent of clubs in Europe have the same problem, it's a position everyone is working on.

"We're working in the market and we haven't come to a definitive decision on some players we were hoping to sign.

"The only high-profile centre-back that's been signed is David Luiz, who's moved to Paris St Germain.

"It's not easy to find centre-backs who are better than the ones we've got and if we could find them then we would sign them."

Enrique admitted that he has been in constant communication with the club's board regarding new additions to the squad, which will welcome back Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano in the next few weeks after they suffered World Cup heartbreak in the final defeat to Germany.

"We've been working hard and we've been in contact the whole time," he said of his relationship with the board.

"It's not just a question of going to the supermarket and taking players home, it's a complicated process.

"I know I've got a good group of players including one of the best players in the world.

"My objective is to get the best out of all the players in my squad. All managers want to have the best players that they possibly can.

"When I joined Barca I knew what players we had and we've been strengthening and I'm really happy.

"My target is to put a team together that is as competitive as possible."

Enrique also confirms he is looking to persuade veteran midfielder Xavi into staying at the Nou Camp, despite reports linking him with a fresh challenge in the Middle East.

"Yes I've spoken to Xavi and it's a matter that hasn't been decided yet," Enrique said. "He has a contract with the club and we're waiting to see what decision he comes to.

"He's a player for whom I have a lot of respect."

Suggested Topics
Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
News
Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
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

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick