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Bobby McMahon

Bobby McMahon

You can see me on Soccer Central most Mondays and Thursdays on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada. I write a regular column for and and frequently guest on various podcasts and radio shows.


How Purple Is Luis Suárez’s Purple Patch?

Written by on December 22, 2013 | 14 Comments »
Posted in Liverpool

During his career Luis Suárez has never been far from the headlines and not all of them good. It seems that there have been times when he has featured in the newspapers more than the crossword puzzle. He started young head-butting a referee in his native Uruguay when he was only 15.


His first European club was Groningen in the Netherlands and when the club turned down a bid from Ajax, Suárez unsuccessfully appealed to the KNVB (Dutch Football Association) in an attempt to force a deal through. Subsequently an increased offer from Ajax proved to be a more effective method of securing the move.

There were reports of a bust-up with a team mate at… to read more please click on the link.

14 responses to “How Purple Is Luis Suárez’s Purple Patch?”

  1. Smiley says:

    Reminds me of Henry’s dominance in his prime EPL days. Makes any real Arsenal fan wonder what could have been if the penny pincher would have put in a proper 50-60M bid as opposed to Wenger’s “thrifty” 40M +1. Arsenal could have been propelled to elite status (for the next decade) with the likes of Real, Barca, Bayern, etc.

    Either way, methinks Suarez leaves next season if they don’t finish top 4.

  2. Ed Gomes says:

    Liverpool had no choice but to pay up. Even with the raise, Suarez will jump ship if things starting going bad.
    Suarez isn’t a kid anymore, who is going to change his stripes. He could go off at any moment. He’s the type of guy that will do anything to get an edge, even if it means outright cheating. When he dives, he feels it’s up to the ref and should it give his club an edge, so be it. Same thing with the handball in the World Cup. He did what he thought was necessary, and the result justified it in his mind.
    An easy player to hate, but his talent is undeniable. Even if he trails off, he’ll continue to make his runs which will open up lanes for his teammates. The guy works hard and just wants to win.
    That being said, if Real comes sniffing, he’s gone. Especially if Liverpool don’t qualify for the CL.

    As for Arsenal, get ready to hear how Walcott’s and Podolski’s return is like signing two new players.
    Ozil was a great signing but in my opinion they still need a striker.
    Tonights game verse Chelsea could go a long way to shut up the critics. Just for that reason alone, I think that Arsenal will drop points.

  3. Smiley – and remind us how many other managers put in a bid?

  4. John Bladen says:

    He’s a great player having an amazing season… but I’m still pleased Arsenal didn’t sign him.

    You always overpay for a player having a lights out season… and there’s no guarantee that Suarez will ever have another half season like this one (his history would suggest we can expect more seasons like last than this over the long term).

    LFC looked in utter disarray last year. The divisive presence/behaviour of Suarez certainly played a part in that. It’s easy to think that business is all behind him when he’s scoring at record pace and the club is winning… but will anyone be surprised when Liverpool’s fortunes turn if he starts with the cannibalism again?

  5. John Bladen says:


    I think they had a choice… they could have sold him on in January for a record price (as they did with an already peaked Torres) and reinvested. The fans would have gone mad… until Suarez starts behaving badly and sulks away a half season at his new club at least.

    Podolski & Giroud will be great financial beneficiaries of Ozil’s presence… but I grant that they aren’t true elite strikers, of course.

    Who should they buy in January?

  6. Smiley says:

    Bobby – As far as we know it was just Wenger… but who really knows.

    Does that change the fact all the other top sides either won silverware, had proper depth in CF or already had a world class CF in their starting lineup or were in the process of buying one? Not to mention that Wenger knew he was a proven BPL star and the other top English clubs already had world class talent and proper depth.

    Arsenal just had Giroud and everyone and their mother recognized they needed depth in that position and a CF who can change a game on his own.

    Bladen – “You always overpay for a player having a lights out season… and there’s no guarantee that Suarez will ever have another half season like this one”

    – Obviously you have difficulty recognizing talent as Suarez has scored and created throughout his entire career. And unlike Torres, Suarez is hungrier with much more to prove (due to image repair and as he will never win a World Cup or Euros).

  7. John Bladen says:

    Apparently, you didn’t even bother to read Bobby’s statistical summary before commenting on the article.

    Perhaps you lack the ability to read it.

    Nonetheless, if you are warranting that Suarez will continue to score at his current (2013) rate for the remainder of his career, please advise how much you are willing to lose on this wager.

  8. Ed Gomes says:

    JB, I’m not a big fan of buying in January. Prices tend to be inflated, and it’s more about panic moves. Not sure if there’s anyone out there worth while. Any real good striker on a good club, shouldn’t be available. Arsenal will once again will be getting a notch below talent should they make a move.

    I will say that I thought a lot of people missed out on Villa.
    I would also take a look and see if Sanchez (Barca) can be had. He would fit the mold and should allow for maximum movement up top.
    Can Arsenal get Benteke, or better yet should they try?
    Will Wenger pony up for an expensive young Frenchman, Antoine Griezmann (Real Sociedad). He plays mostly out of the left, but as played up top.
    Would they target Remy at Newcastle.
    Sorry for all the French players, but it’s what I see that may be available. I think that Tevez would be a great get, but he shouldn’t be available.
    A Frenchman Arsenal should stay away from is Benzema. His confidence is shot and I don’t think he’ll get better.

    I did find it interesting that Higuain came out and said that there was no contact made with Arsenal.

    Everyone at Arsenal should benefit from Ozil, but let’s not overplay it. Guys still need to stick the ball in the back of the net. Ramsey has come good, but should he trail off, who will step up?

    Suarez is a wonderful talent, but he’ll jump ship at any time for any reason. Everyone, including Liverpool hierarchy, should know this. It will be interesting to see what happens in the off season, when Real comes calling.
    I don’t want to discount what Suarez brings to the table. The guy gives his all and his vision, movement and smarts allows for teammates to flourish. He might be crazy, but he’s no dummy.

    Sorry, for the Arsenal banter. Suarez deserves better.

  9. smiley says:

    Ed – Villa’s wife and baby were behind the Spain stay… but I’m sure Wenger’s penny pinching didn’t help lure him to Arsenal.

    IMO Benzema is still a top finisher and creator and has shown more hunger this season.

    Finally, if I am a manager/owner then I’d be more concerned with my world class CF sulking and yelling at teammates on the pitch than biting an opponent. Dumb moves in the pitch are corrected with age but a selfish premadonna are traits instilled permanently.

    PS Giroud seems like a great guy but yet again he proved against Chelsea that Arsenal need a world class CF who takes advantage in games where chances are few and far between in 1-0 type of matches.

    * And Greizman is not a striker.

  10. Ed Gomes says:

    I wouldn’t consider Sanchez an all out striker either.
    The way Arsenal plays, they could maximize movement with three forwards cutting in from all positions. Very much like Barca plays.

    Since we’ve highjacked the post, I thought the following was funny.

    I’m far from an AVB fan, but where are all the pundits who criticized him for his hand gestures. Is Sherwood being a good tactician and AVB was overbearing?

    Like so many opinions, present company included, it’s all in the eye of the beholder.

    Merry Christmas Everyone

  11. Astronomer says:

    Ed Gomes,
    You wrote:
    “A Frenchman Arsenal should stay away from is Benzema.”

    I totally agree — the main problem with Karim Benzema (throughout his career at both club and national levels) has been his consistency (or lack thereof). He sometimes gets into hot streaks and scores lots of goals (some of them quite eye-catching ones a la Zlatan) — and, then, soon thereafter he descends into a cold streak that lasts a long time.

    Interestingly enough, the overall point that Bobby is making about how long Suarez’s purple patch can realistically last has already been exhibited by Benzema over and over again throughout his career.

    He is simply NOT the type of player that a club with ambitions as lofty as those of Real Madrid should have as their main go-to striker.


  12. Ed Gomes says:

    I think that Benzema could be looked at as a bust. A guy who’s living off a reputation that never really existed. He cost Real 35 million euros at the ripe age of 22. Let’s just say his value hasn’t increased.

    Luis Suarez cost Liverpool almost 10 million euros less. Let me add that even if Suarez stopped scoring in such a prolific way, he would still be an asset to Liverpool. His movement, vision and “want” creates space and goal scoring changes for teammates.

    You just don’t get that with/from Benzema.

    Another player that I have never been high on, and I just might be completely wrong about is Higuain. We’ll see, since he seems to have established himself well at Napoli. But, I always looked at him as a guy that left too much on the table. He should be a harder and smarter worker on the field. There’s running around and running with purpose. Like I said, maybe he’s proving me wrong.

    I brought those guys up since all three are 26 years old. Higuain and Benzema both fought for playing time and played with a prolific scorer in Cristiano.
    Benzema already has 8 assists to go along with his 5 goals in league play. I still feel that he should be getting more goals with all the attention Cristiano gets. Yes, the whole team works for Cristiano, but frankly he seems to have to have it go all by himself too many times. In my opinion, Benzema should be more of a contributor scoring wise.
    Higuain seems to be doing it all at Napoli. He currently sits at 9 goals and 4 assists in league play.

  13. Belated wishes for a great holiday season and my hope is that Smiley doesn’t find a way to turn season’s greetings into a comment on Wenger.

  14. Smiley says:

    Someone left 40M + 1 cubic feet of coal in my stocking… WTF!

    PS Is Villa going down or is Lambert about to join AVB?

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