Luis Suarez joins Barcelona: Brendan Rodgers stresses Liverpool tried to keep hold of Suarez but the striker 'wanted to leave'

Suarez signed a long-term contract with the Reds last season but has been sold to Barcelona for £75m following his latest biting scandal that saw him given a four-month ban

Luis Suarez arrived in Barcelona ahead of officially announcing his move to the club
Luis Suarez arrived in Barcelona ahead of officially announcing his move to the club

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers insists the club did everything they could to keep hold of Luis Suarez prior to his move to Barcelona.

The Catalan giants announced on Wednesday that the controversial Uruguayan was "100 per cent" a Barca player, although the striker was conspicuous by his absence at a press conference due to his four-month FIFA ban from all football-related activity after biting Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini's shoulder at the World Cup.

That incident, the third time in Suarez's career that he had been banned for biting, prompted many in the game to urge Rodgers to get rid of his star forward before the start of the season.

But the Northern Irishman is adamant that the 27-year-old's exit was more down to his desire to move to Catalonia than his antics in Brazil.

"We did everything we could as a club to keep Luis," he told the Liverpool Echo.

"He wanted to go and play in Spain, and unfortunately when a player no longer wants to play for you, we need as a club to look at it.

"It was his decision for him to go, he's gone to Barcelona, a club he wanted to play for and now we'll move on.

"I'm not sure if he would have gone regardless of the World Cup. But I never felt that towards the end of the season, and likewise he never said he would give us another year either. He had obviously signed a new deal so we had that.

"But I think we have had great service out of Luis and it's one that we can't worry too much about now, it's done, it's gone and our focus is here.

"There is a lot of work going on with the recruitment team in terms of getting in the right player and I am sure we can identify that.

"This club and many other clubs have shown over a period of time you move on, and believe me, it will be a really exciting season for us."

Brendan Rodgers talks with Luis Suarez during a Liverpool training session

Suarez will be ineligible to play for Barca, who reportedly paid 94million euros (£75million) for his services - or even to train with his team-mates - unless any appeal lodged with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) is successful.

PA

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in