Blogs & Opinion


Guillem Balague:

Most Popular Posts:

Recent Comments:

Cem Takaci on Making his mark

"Hi Guillem, all of this hype sourounding jose mourinho and the saying that the wave is swinging for real madrid right now. But once Jose leaves and it does seem that he will if not this... " View all comments

Siyavuya Zamxaka on Awesome foursome

"wonderfull column as always...I think Madrid have a better chance of winning the Cup game in all of these 4 games. This is because Mourinho can play any system and not worry about how ... " View all comments

World Cup 2014: Luis Suarez needs rehabilitating after his bite on Georgio Chiellini

Guillem Balague - Guillem Balague Posted 27th June 2014 view comments

Guillem Balague has coupled watching glittering football World Cup football with listening out for the tournament’s key quotes.

Over the course of the South American shindig, the Revista regular has been analysing the best soundbites from the players and managers involved.

It's been a frantic few days in Brazil after Uruguay striker Luis Suarez was kicked out of the World Cup for sinking his teeth into an Italian.

Uruguay striker Luis Suarez has been suspended for four months

Uruguay striker Luis Suarez has been suspended for four months

Victim Giorgio Chiellini has said the punishment of four months in the doghouse is too much, while others have said it is not long enough.

In this column, Guillem dissects the reaction to Suarez's four-month ban, Argentina's tactical conundrum and Paul Scholes' suggestion that foreign players are ruining England's chances…

LUIS SUAREZ

HE SAID: "These are just things that happen out on the pitch. It was just the two of us inside the area and he bumped into me with his shoulder."

GUILLEM’S ASSESSMENT: Luis will have to ask for forgiveness to help Barcelona (or even Madrid, but the Catalans are favourites) sell the idea he wants to reform, that he is a player worth having at their club. The problem is, he has asked for forgiveness before and not enough work has been put in place for him to study and correct that awful, weird instinct he has.

So we are back to square one – or worse, in the absence of an apology. It can be corrected but it doesn’t help if FIFA tried to please the hysteria. He had to be punished – I have no problem with the nine games and the money fine, but four months away from work? Why do Liverpool have to pay for his mistake? I have the feeling the games and the money is the sporting punishment. The four months is FIFA’s reaction to hysteria – plus something else: they are trying to punish the person (and they are doing so using FIFA rules) as well as trying to give an example to the world.

But I don’t give them the moral stand that you require to judge not a player, but a person, when they are such a controversial organisation. I think the months will be reduced on appeal and will start looking like the punishment his unsporting and violent behavior deserves. I still think it is worse to break a leg on purpose than to bite, and I feel a reduction of his punishment will reflect that. Anyway, at the end of this story, there is a man with a problem. If he was your kid, would you call him a monster?

FIFA VICE PRESIDENT JIM BOYCE 

HE SAID: “I think the punishment that has been handed out to Luis Suarez is fully justified. Hopefully he will have learnt that this type of behaviour cannot be tolerated under any circumstances."

GUILLEM’S ASSESSMENT: Punishment has not worked for him before. There is more work to be done if there is real interest to correct him. Barcelona think that if they dealt with Hristo Stoichkov and Samuel Eto’o before, they can deal with Luis Suárez.

ARGENTINA MANAGER ALEJANDRO SABELLA

HE SAID: “We started improving from the point of view of structure. We see an improvement."

GUILLEM’S ASSESSMENT: Sabella has betrayed his earlier reflection – that the team needed more defenders. The team has got Angel di María, Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuaín and had Sergio Aguero but he will be missing the rest of the World Cup. Those players want their energies to attack, so the team will always get parted in two. Hence his try at five defenders not only against Bosnia but in some qualifiers. The players asked him to change and he has done so. Against Iran their fluidity was a concern. Against Nigeria, with less pressure from the midfield, the ball moved faster and the injury of Agüero might have worked in their favour – Ezequiel Lavezzi is a winger who is used to working harder defensively. So, Argentina, little by little, accident by accident, Messi goal by Messi goal, are approaching their best version. 

PAUL SCHOLES

HE SAID: "Simply, the Premier League is riddled with average foreign players. This is having such a detrimental effect on the first-team opportunities for young English talent, and our international results."

GUILLEM’S ASSESSMENT: There you go. Foreigners are to blame! End of story. Looking forward to Euro 2016.

Post to your View!

Be the first to post a comment on this story

back to top

Other Football Experts:

Latest Posts in Football:

Gary Neville

Nev: Ron return 'more possible'

Gary Neville has responded to the rumours that Manchester United could bring back Cristiano Ronaldo....

Jamie Carragher

Carra: Toon players 'a disgrace'

As pressure mounts on Alan Pardew, Jamie Carragher says Newcastle’s players must work harder....

Graeme Souness

Souness: Gunner win the group

Graeme Souness says Arsenal will in their group and have potential to go far in Europe this season....

Latest News RSS feeds

West Ham fight back to draw

West Ham twice came from behind to earn a battling 2-2 draw with Hull City in an entertaining clash at the KC Stadium.

Defensive worries for Arsenal

Arsenal are facing a defensive crisis ahead of their Champions League opener against Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday.

Carra: Toon players 'a disgrace'

As pressure mounts on Alan Pardew, Jamie Carragher says Newcastle’s players must work harder.

Live transfer updates

Paddy Kenny is to join Bolton, Nicolas Anelka heads to Mumbai City FC and Cristiano Ronaldo is linked with a Man Utd return.

Valencia strike delights Sam

Sam Allardyce praised West Ham's character and Enner Valencia’s wonderful goal after a 2-2 draw with Hull City.

Features

Champions League Goal Zone: See goals as they go in on Soccer Special

Champions League Goal Zone: See goals as they go in on Soccer Special

The Champions League is back and you can keep up with all the action in our brand-new Goal Zone on Sky Sports News HQ.

Same old story for Liverpool?

Same old story for Liverpool?

It is five years since the famous Champions League music was heard blaring out of the Anfield sound-system.

Champions League: Shinji Kagawa is back where he belongs playing for Borussia Dortmund and Jurgen Klopp

Champions League: Shinji Kagawa is back where he belongs playing for Borussia Dortmund and Jurgen Klopp

“The best moment was the ‘Shinji Kagawa’ chant during the warm-up. It hasn’t been that loud for a long time.” Jurgen Klopp isn’t one to mask his excitement. Shinji Kagawa is back in more ways than one.