- Full name Luis Suarez
- Birth date January 24, 1987
- Birth place Salto, Uruguay
- Current age 29 years 316 days
- Height 5 ft 11 in
Liverpool's No. 7 was a spectactular January window signing from Ajax in 2011 but his move was overshadowed by other events on deadline day itself. Andy Carroll arrived from Newcastle to render the Suarez fee a short-lived record sum and Fernando Torres was sold to Chelsea to the horror and anger of the Anfield supporters. All of this was a little unfair to the Uruguayan who quickly claimed a goal in front of The Kop on his debut against Stoke and has the pedigree to become a favourite on Merseyside.
His potential as a youngster was obvious as he fired Nacional to the Uruguayan title in 2006 before proving just as important to Groningen when moving to Europe. Ajax wasted little time in raiding their Dutch rivals after only one season at Euroborg and, after much wrangling with the player pushing for a transfer, a deal was completed for around €7.5 million. With no exaggeration, he was a goal machine in Amsterdam and soon passed 100 strikes for the famous club. The Dutch Player of the Year in 2010, he became captain of Ajax and their leading light.
With Europe's top clubs circling, he made a massive impact on the World Cup Finals in South Africa - confirming his partnership with Diego Forlan is one of the best in the game and scoring three times, including a brilliant brace against South Korea. However, he was also guilty of blatant cheating when handling on the line in the last minute of the quarter-final against Ghana to receive a red card. Asamoah Gyan missed the penalty and Uruguay progressed after a shoot-out.
It was a little surprising that he stayed at Ajax and his form dipped, culminating in an extraordinary incident when he bit PSV Eindhoven's Otman Bakkal and was banned for seven games. The suspension meant he never played for coach Frank de Boer as a deal was finally agreed with Liverpool despite plenty of haggling between the two parties.
After an impressive first six months at Anfield, during which he tormented Manchester United, Suarez added to his growing stock in the summer of 2011 by earning the Player of the Tournament award during Uruguay's Copa America success.
Suarez continued his fine form into the 2011-2012 campaign, but he was stopped in his tracks by an eight-match suspension for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.
Strengths: Critics may query the strength of the Dutch Eredivisie but it's difficult to underestimate the confidence gained from scoring goals for fun. Nobody scored more in the world than Suarez in 2010 and it's a happy knack to have. In his own words: "I can say that I am technically very good and I am lucky to be able to score goals easily." There is much more to his game and there is still plenty to come as he learns to play at the highest level. There's something about him which seems to attract attention whenever he's on a football pitch.
Weaknesses: There has to be a question mark over his character. The handball furore is one thing but clamping his teeth into an opponent indicates a short fuse which could be burning when roughed up by uncompromising Premier League defenders. A string of yellow cards for Ajax, a sending off on his international debut, fall-outs with team-mates and a reputation for diving are nothing to be proud of. It's likely that the Uruguayan can handle himself but he has still got to prove himself in one of the major leagues.
Career high: The 2011 Copa America saw Suarez score in Uruguay's opening game, a 1-1 draw with Peru, and he would go on to score three more during the tournament. A brace in the semi-final win, again over Peru, helped Uruguay into the final, where he scored the first goal to set up a 3-0 win over Paraguay. The Player of the Tournament award was justified praise for a player who had made more of an impact than the likes of Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero.
Career low: The biting incident was shocking, as was his deliberate handball at the World Cup, but he hit a real low when being found guilty of racially abusing Patrice Evra. He was hit with an eight-game suspension.
Style: Deadly, direct, imaginative and versatile, a bundle of energy.
Quotes: "Suarez already looks like the kind of complete attacker that will help compensate for the loss of Torres. He seems to be able to play in a variety of roles in the forward line, which makes him well placed to wreak havoc on unsuspecting defences." Former Liverpool defender Mark Lawrenson, 2011.
Trivia: One of seven brothers, he was so poor as a child he was unable to afford boots to attend a football camp.
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- Arsenal not a step up for Suarez - Gerrard (Sep 1, 2013)
- Wenger positive of new arrivals (Sep 1, 2013)
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