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Barcelona superstar Luis Suarez has thanked his former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard for discouraging him from signing for Arsenal during the summer of 2013.
Spanish newspaper Sport have published an extract from the striker’s upcoming autobiography, in which the Uruguayan maverick claims Gerrard talked him out of a move to North London.
“It would have been a big error that I would have made had it not been for Steven Gerrard,” he said.
“We spoke about this when I went to Melwood [Liverpool’s training ground] to pick up my things at the end of the summer and he said: ‘You did the right thing, you waited until the best moment.'”
“He had told me [the previous summer] to play well for Liverpool, give it another year and it will be Bayern Munich, Real Madrid or Barcelona coming for you and then you can go where you want, because you have the quality to play at any of those three clubs.”
Arsenal infamously made a £40m (plus £1) bid for Suarez, which they believed would activate a release clause that would enable them to freely speak to the striker. Despite the contract, Liverpool simply refused Arsenal permission, much to the annoyance of the player at the time.
However, Liverpool held on to him, and he enjoyed a breathtaking individual season – bagging 31 goals and firing Liverpool to within inches of the Premier League title.
His form earned him a mammoth move to Barcelona during this summer, although he has yet to find the back of the net for the Catalans.