Steven Gerrard: Luis Suarez engineered way out of Liverpool
'World Cup bite signalled end of Suarez's Anfield era'
Last Updated: 01/09/14 10:10am
Steven Gerrard knew Luis Suarez would ‘engineer’ a way out of Liverpool when he saw him bite Giorgio Chiellini during the World Cup.
The Uruguayan, who was handed a four month ban for the offence, switched Anfield for Barcelona in the summer in a £75m move, following a superb season for Liverpool.
Speaking to Jamie Carragher on Sky Sports ahead of his side’s Super Sunday clash with Tottenham, Gerrard revealed he had hoped Suarez would stay in the North West for at least one more season.
I knew there was no way back for him then and I knew he was going to engineer a way out.
However, he was resigned to losing last season’s top scorer when he saw Suarez’s headline-grabbing actions in Brazil.
“I thought he was going to stay, I thought we’d have got another year out of him,” said Gerrard.
“I was actually already on the floor when I saw the bite because we knew we were going out. It was a double blow, knowing you’re going out of the World Cup and knowing you’re going to lose your best player.
“I knew there was no way back for him then and I knew he was going to engineer a way out.”
In a bid to bolster Liverpool’s attacking options following Suarez’s exit, boss Brendan Rodgers last week signed former Man City striker Mario Balotelli for £16m from AC Milan.
While Gerrard accepts Balotelli has had a troubled past, he is hopeful the Italy forward – like Daniel Sturridge – will seize his opportunity at Liverpool and make the most of his talent.
“It’s an interesting one because he’s got a point to prove,” said Gerrard.
“Similar to Sturridge, people are waiting to see whether he’ll take to Liverpool, whether Liverpool is going to be the right place for him.
“He’s certainly got the talent and ability. I’ve trained with him two or three times and he’s got a great touch, he’s quick, he’s got the movement – he’s got everything in the bag.
“We’ll have to wait and see if he behaves himself and performs – that’s what everyone is waiting for and I’m no different.”
Gerrard also revealed he is happy with the club’s summer spending.
As well as Balotelli, Liverpool have added eight more players to their ranks – including on loan Javier Manquillo. While the Reds skipper accepts it may take a while for the new arrivals to gel, he is optimistic that Liverpool will improve as the season goes on.
“I’m impressed with all of them, they’ve all got strengths and they’re all good players,” he said of the new signings.
“We have to be a bit patient with them because they’re not all going to play great from the start and it is going to take time for some of them to settle.
“But what’s happened at Liverpool, with losing Luis and making so many signings, I think we’ll get stronger as the season goes on.
“The key is going to be how quickly we can all adapt to each other over the next weeks and months and try to get close to the performances of last year. It’s going to take time because there’s been so much change.”
Watch an extended version of Jamie Carragher's interview with Steven Gerrard on the Sky Sports iPad app and Sky Go.