Barcelona are likely to stop pursuing Luis Suarez after his latest biting incident for which he has been suspended from all football-related activity for four months.
Uruguay’s Suarez bit Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder. The Liverpool striker has also been banned for nine international matches, ruling him out of the rest of the World Cup.
He will miss the first nine games of the Premier League season. Suarez has also been fined $90,000. The ban is the biggest in World Cup history, beating the eight games given to Italy’s Mauro Tassotti for elbowing Spain’s Luis Enrique in 1994.
The incident occurred during Tuesday’s 2014 World Cup Group D game, which Uruguay won 1-0 to qualify for the last 16. Uruguay have until Sunday to appeal against the decision. Uruguay play Colombia in Rio in a last-16 match on Saturday.
Cayman referee Gary “The Original” Whittaker thinks Suarez deserved far stiffer punishment.
“He should have been banned for at least two years from all football,” Whittaker said. “It was not a spur of the moment incident, this was his third biting offense.”
Whittaker said that if Suarez felt unfairly challenged by Chiellini, he should have just pushed him.
“This is not a punishment, just a slap on the wrist and teaches kids and other players a bad example,” Whittaker said. “It seems he got off lightly because of who he is because I’m sure a lesser known player would have got punished harsher.”
Until this incident Barcelona were ready to offer Chile World Cup striker Alexis Sanchez to Liverpool as part of a $100 million player-plus-cash deal.
Barca’s arch-rivals Real Madrid had already cooled their interest in Suarez – and Liverpool may now be tempted to off load as sponsors review their contracts with the mercurial 27-year-old. That’s if they can find any takers because he is now viewed more as a liability than an asset.
Suarez may lose a $1.4 million boot deal as Adidas are reviewing their sponsorship of him. Other sponsors are considering their options too. Sanchez is being monitored by Manchester United and Arsenal.