Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 25 October 2014

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insists Luis Suarez feels at home at Anfield

Brendan Rodgers fought hard to keep Luis Suarez

Liverpool striker Luis Suarez has pledged his immediate future to the club, suggesting there will be no transfer drama in January like there was in the summer.

The Uruguay international, who scored four and provided an assist for the other in Wednesday's 5-1 win over Norwich, has indicated he is content with life at Anfield.

In doing so he echoed the assertion of manager Brendan Rodgers, who yesterday reiterated his post-match comments stating he believes the 26-year-old is happier than he has ever been on Merseyside – a far cry from four months ago when the player was claiming the club had reneged on a deal to allow him to leave for a Champions League club.

"When I'm happy off the field I'm at home in the Premier League and it is the best league out there," he told Spanish newspaper Marca.

"Yes, I am happy here and I will continue. The main thing is Liverpool are in the top four after a long time. I will help the team get it (Champions League)."

And there lies the crux of the matter. While Liverpool can still dangle the prospect of a return to Europe's elite then Suarez is likely to be satisfied.

However, if they should slip from their fourth-placed position by the end of the season, the situation is likely to change.

After a run of 13 goals in nine matches to become the Premier League's leading scorer, Rodgers can be bullish about Suarez's future, especially considering they fought so hard to keep him in the light of Arsenal's £40,000,001 summer bid.

"It is just a feel, just an inkling of where he is at in his life," said the Reds boss.

"Through my regular conversations with him, he seems happy. I don't think there is a clearer benchmark than on the field.

"His behaviour, his mannerisms, his maturity and his performance level tells me he is very happy here at Liverpool and in the Premier League.

"He is playing remarkably well, consistently well, and that's what gives me the confidence.

"We don't want to regurgitate everything from the past. That was a difficult summer for everyone.

"We stood firm as a club. He understood where we were at. Our thinking was to keep our best players. Hopefully he certainly feels he is vindicated for staying.

"This is the perfect club for him, the whole profile suits Luis down to the ground and hopefully in the coming years he can achieve everything he wants to achieve which is to play at the top level of the game.

"His talent deserves that and this is a club that deserves that."

Rodgers knows only too well, however, that a failure to turn their form in the first half of the season into something more tangible come May will have a definitive bearing on Suarez's future.

And on his virtuoso display against the Canaries, there are few who can argue his talent does not deserve to be displayed at the very top of the game.

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