Barcelona

Luis Suarez turning it round at Barcelona

With the vast majority of us Liverpool fans being in complete and utter shock when he decided to move having only just signed a new contract Luis Suarez swiftly departed to one of his dream teams in Spain to kick off his career again. Having once again been naughty biting another player on this occasion Cheillini the Juventus and Italy centre back we as fans were preparing to yet again wait for the return of our talisman this season. In a surprise £75 million bid Barcelona lured him away knowing full well he would not be available for much of the season, showing their intent in signing him top help the club progress in the absence of Alexis Sanchez.

Having got Suarez back fit and free of suspension he was thrown straight into the team failing to score in his first seven games for the club. This then lead people to question whether or not Barcelona’s risk had been worth while all along and had they just wasted such a significant transfer fee. During this period Suarez was showing his metal through assists finding Messi and Neymar on several occasions, proving he had that creative spark but lacked the end product at the time. Since then he has been on a mission for the side scoring in the Champions League more recently against Manchester City twice at the Etihad.

It is only fit that we talk about this great player in advance of the All star charity match taking place at Anfield in the coming weeks. Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher have selected there squads and the first forward Stevie chose was obviously the Barcelona star who has now scored 1 in every 2 games this season. This change in form has coincided with the Catalans rise to the top of the table knocking their biggest rivals off of the summit.

Should he stay or Should he go

After the events that took place during the Italy, Uruguay group stage match in this year’s world cup there has been some serious doubt about the future of Luis Suarez at Liverpool next season. After all, of the controversy since his arrival at Anfield Luis Suarez has only just managed to get Liverpool supporters back on side after what has been nothing less than a world class performance from start to finish last season.

The issues are not with his footballing ability for which he is one of the best players in the world at the moment but, with his stupid shenanigans that see him suspended for large periods of time. Luis Suarez has been banned in the last 4 years for 34 games without ever picking up a red card which, is a staggering fact showing how bad his antics can be. Firstly, Liverpool supported him through the racism case, then there was the bite on Ivanovic and now Cheillini is it time we said goodbye?

Barcelona and other large clubs in Europe are not helping Liverpool decide by beginning talks with them when the verdict is still out on whether as a club we want him to stay or not. Liverpool has done the right thing in putting a price on his head if any team wants to see him leave Anfield. £80 million is an extraordinary amount to pay for a player but it would not be the first or the last when you look at Real Madrid’s willingness to throw their cash about.

Despite all of the wrong doings and headline writing he does Liverpool would sorely miss our best player. Luis Suarez is not just a name on the team sheet he is our talisman, playmaker everything goes through him, which says a lot when you have a player like Steven Gerrard in your team. Luis Suarez was the first Liverpool player to score 30 or more in the Barclays premier league a feat that meant he surpassed Robbie Fowler’s club record of 28 in a season.

If you were to take away, all of the Suarez’s goals and assists, then the club will have finished beneath Manchester United seeing us finish in 9th showing how important one player can be. The old saying one man does not make you a team is starting to dissolve because the year before Robin Van Persie won the league for United, which would be difficult to dispute.

So Liverpool have two choices, support Suarez completely and trust this will never happen again and see that he continues to score goals at the tremendous rate he does or sell him and replace him with as close a replacement we can which might mean bidding for Sanchez or Falcao who are equally potent.

Athletico Madrid vs Barcelona 1st Leg Preview

 This is the second of the two games on Tuesday night kicking off at 19:45 at the Vincente Calderon where the visitors Barcelona will want to go one up against their league rivals.

The previous three meetings this season have seen the sides share the spoils which is rather unusual taking into account the two attacking forces the possess, and only two goals in those 3 games have been scored.

Athletico Madrid

Athletico Madrid are the current league leaders by one point which is surprising when you think of the superstar teams of Barcelona and Real Madrid. Simeone has got an excellent team from front to back. Firstly at the back they have probably the best young keeper in Europe if not the world Courtois who’s future is still undecided at parent club Chelsea. Then there’s Diego Costa. The Spanish striker has been on red hot form scoring in all competitions for fun scaring the living day light of defenders.   

Barcelona

Barcelona have the ability to get themselves motivated for big occasions against big teams which will be the minimum requirement if they are even to give Athletico a game. Barcelona have masses of experience in the side which unfortunately for Athletico has won trophies meaning that Barca will know what they have to do to leave Vincente Calderon with all 3 points. With the likes of Messi, Neymar, Pedro and Sanchez Barca will find no issues creating chances it will be an intense battle to see how they come out against Courtois.

In my personal opinion, I would go with a 1-0 victory for the home side Athletico Madrid because of the hostility within the ground and the willingness to get one over the Catalans after publicy stating they’re making the UCL their main priority.