Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 21 October 2014

Barcelona deal hasn't put the bite on Suarez

Luis Suarez has joined Barcelona in a £75m dealLuis Suarez
Luis Suarez has joined Barcelona in a £75m deal

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has declined to include a 'no biting' clause in Luis Suarez's contract.

The 27-year-old Uruguay striker joined Barca from Liverpool for a reported £75m last month, but will not play for the Catalan club until October as he is the subject of a four-month ban from football.

The punishment was handed to Suarez after he bit Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup match, although it could yet be reduced subject to an appeal lodged with the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

As things stand, he cannot train with his new Barca team-mates and could not be formally unveiled as he is banned from entering the Nou Camp until his suspension lapses.

Bartomeu revealed the Primera Division club had approached Liverpool about Suarez before the World Cup finals and stressed Barca were not dissuaded from completing the deal once the Fifa ban had been implemented.

Asked if the player had a 'no biting' clause in his contract, Bartomeu said: "No, there is no clause. If the clause did exist we wouldn't say it, but it doesn't exist."

"We didn't rethink the decision (to sign him) and we told Luis after the bite. He knows he did wrong.

"He apologised. That's very important for us.

"That means he knows that he did not do things properly – and of course, coming to our city, coming to our club, there's going to be a way of managing Luis Suarez, because at Liverpool he was a perfect player."

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