It was the right thing for Suarez, Kenny and Ayre to apologize for the handshake saga. It wasn’t a good move by Suarez, refusing to shake hands. I can understand him feeling hard done by when he has been globally branded a racist. He maintains his innocence. But as a professional footballer he should have shook Evra’s hand, put the matter to bed once and for all and got on with the game. Likewise, Evra shouldn’t have tried to provoke him at the final whistle and Ferguson shouldn’t have made his comment that ‘Liverpool should sell Suarez’ as that’s got nothing to do with him.
Nobody at Liverpool told Ferguson he should sack Cantona when he kicked a fan. Or that he should get rid of Ferdinand when he was found guilty of deliberately missing a drug test. Or that Keane should be shown the door when he went out to injure Alf-Inge Haaland. You didn’t hear Benitez, our manager at the time, calling for Rooney to be sacked when he was proved to have once again cheated on his wife when he paid for prostitutes. And Kenny didn’t call for Giggs to get cast aside when it came out that he had been having an affair with his brother’s wife for years. Fair enough, Ferguson had a right to say he thought Suarez was wrong not to shake Patrice Evra’s hand but he shouldn’t start telling Liverpool Football club which players they should sack.
I was glad that the apologies were subsequently issued and accepted. Hopefully this goes some way to repairing the image of our great club. I also hope that we can all move forward and concentrate on football. Obviously there’s no love lost between Liverpool and Manchester United. We just don’t like each other. But that’s been the case for years. Fowler and Neville were never best friends. In fact it’s fair to say they despised each other. But the best way Liverpool or United can hurt each other is by winning matches. Knock each other out of cups. Beat each other to titles.
Personally, I would love Liverpool to keep Suarez. He’s one of our best players. He scored against United on Saturday and continually caused their defence problems. I’m just a bit worried that he won’t be allowed to get on with his career without discrimination. Liverpool won’t sell Suarez because Ferguson thinks we should. But if referees and the FA treat Suarez harshly and give decisions against him in the future then the club might have no choice but to sell him. I already think there are decisions that haven’t gone in his favour because of his reputation. There have been times when he has genuinely been fouled and referees have automatically assumed that he’s dived. Decisions like this will cost us trophies if they continually go against us and we lose games as a result.
Suarez has to try his best to repay the fans, Kenny and everyone else at the club for their unequivocal support throughout the racial allegations and his ban. He has to stop doing silly things like sticking two fingers up to Fulham fans and do his talking on the pitch. But the authorities have to allow him the opportunity to do so. Anyone can make a mistake. It’s what Suarez does next and how he is treated in return that will dictate whether he is able to move forward or forced to move on.