It took him a while, but Luis Suarez has hit top form for Barcelona and it could not have come at a better time. The Uruguayan has scored 22 goals and assisted 20 more in just 41 appearances. A shadow of his performances at Liverpool, but let’s all remember that he had a four month ban after biting Italy international Giorgio Chiellini at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
The former Liverpool man started off his Barcelona campaign in bitter-sweet fashion after he assisted Neymar for Barcelona’s only goal against an in-form Real Madrid. The Blaugrana eventually lost the match 3-1 after a fairly disappointing performance.
Suarez struggled to find his feet for the first half of the season, but soon created a bond with his strike partners Lionel Messi and Neymar Jr. They helped him along the way and this bond that they have managed to pull together on and off the field has enabled him to explore football in more than just a scoring sense but also in terms of assisting others.
Many say that Luis Suarez was the greatest magician of all time after creating the illusion that Brendan Rodgers was a great manager. Liverpool fed off the performances of Suarez and when he left for Barça, it soon showed. Liverpool have finished sixth in the Premier League after an abysmal season under the guidance of Brendan Rodgers.
Luis Suarez: The Man Who Helped Barcelona “Win Ugly”
When I say “win ugly,” I mean it in the best way possible. He has this raw, unwillingness to give up when times are tough, and that has helped Barcelona on many an occasion. A perfect example of this was when Barcelona played Real Madrid for the second time in La Liga this season. The game was tied at 1-1 after Jeremy Mathieu and Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring.
Real Madrid looked to be dominating much of the game until Suarez decided to make a run, piercing through Sergio Ramos and Pepe. Dani Alves played a marvellous long ball to put Suarez in for goal. He took the ball down with ease and placed it on the bottom left hand side of Iker Casillas to seal a 2-1 victory. A year ago, Barcelona would not have even thought of playing such direct football. Much of the credit should go to the tactics of Luis Enrique but without a player like Suarez, Barcelona’s direct football would not have worked as well as it is now.
Being one of the most, if not the most, prolific strikers in the world meant that he brought an extra edge to an already potent Barcelona side. The front three all have brilliant individual characteristics that have gelled ever so perfectly. Messi brings the magic, the touch of class, the Maradona way of playing the beautiful game. Neymar brings the ‘Samba’, the entertainment, the skill and the Brazilian type of football. And Suarez, he brings the clinical finishing, knowing where to be at the right moment, the knowledge of how to put the ball in the back of the net, the rawness of English football.
That is why Barcelona are looking like one of the best teams ever. They have a front three that supply to their every need. And Suárez is back to his good old best.