Eredivisie

‘The Ego’ Has Not Landed, It’s Just Pending…

It has undoubtedly been an interesting World Cup for Uruguay forward Luis Suarez. Goals, handballs, eye-catching displays, etcetera, etcetera, and now, on the back of all that, he appears to be pushing at the door for a potential Premier League move; with Man United and Tottenham reportedly amongst the interested parties.

Certainly, his ego, and perhaps hubris, was palpable in suggesting he has somewhat outgrown current club Ajax, telling De Volkskrant: “I think that the people at Ajax all know that it will be very difficult for them to hold on to me.

“I’ve played a good World Cup and it is a known fact that this results in interest from bigger clubs. You never know what happens.”

This is probably a little brash and unfair when referring to a club of Ajax’s prestige and structure. Nevertheless, it is reasonable to say the Dutch Eredivisie isn’t the strongest league. So, in the midst of a prospective Premiership arrival, let’s take a peek through that door he metaphorically pushed open just a few sentences ago, gaze forlornly into his eyes, and ask…who the hell is Luis Suarez?

Born in Salto, the ‘second city’ of Uruguay, Luis left for Montevideo at the tender age of 11 to join the prestigious Nacional youth system. Progressing successfully through the ranks, and developing swiftly, he eventually made his full-team debut in 2005 aged 18. His professional career started strongly in his home country; playing only 29 times, he still managed to score 12 goals. Thus, it wasn’t long – one season to be precise – before he inevitably moved on. His swift progression attracted attention from Europe and Luis signed for Dutch side Groningen in 2006, for a fee in the region of €800,000.

Another brief spell ensued in which the cultured forward again demonstrated notable goal scoring proficiency, duly notching up 10 league goals before the ‘big boys’ came sniff, sniff sniffing around. Suarez signed for Ajax in a deal worth in the excess of €7million. Thus, in the space of two years he progressed from the Uruguayan First Division to the four times European champions, and his development did not halt there. His goal scoring ratio has been remarkable; collecting the Eredivisie Top Scorer gong last season, whilst amassing 74 goals in 97 games in total throughout his three seasons with the Amsterdam giants.

His international career has also been chugging along nicely, with 13 goals in total. Luis played an increasingly vital role in qualification for South Africa 2010, however his international zenith has clearly been successfully thrusting himself upon the global stage during the ‘tournament proper’ this summer. Blissfully ignoring the ‘new hand of God’ hullabaloo, blah, blah, blah, his World Cup has been a triumphant and valuable showcase for his talents. Not only has he scored three goals up to now – with the inane third-place-playoff still remaining – but he has also illustrated attacking fluidity with Forlan, an ability to create as well convert chances and, yes, yes, stop the other team scoring with an impish hand…the little rascal, eh?

All of which probably makes some of his previously mentioned sentiments correct – i.e. heightened transfer interest.

With evident aplomb in front of goal, a confident approach and a blistering strike, he could certainly be a coveted talent in the transfer market. His goal scoring record is clearly impressive. This, of course, does not necessarily guarantee a seamless and successful transition from the Dutch league to the Premier League; adjustment will be required. Nevertheless, still only 23-years-old, he could potentially make an astute signing, and a enduring one at that. As mentioned, Man United and Tottenham have been most forcefully linked with the player, but Inter Milan are also reported to be surveying the situation.

So, Luis seemingly wants a move, but would you want him…?

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