Barcelona agree to sign Suarez from Liverpool
BARCELONA - Reuters
A handout photo released by Spanish soccer club FC Barcelona on 11 July 2014 of Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez.Barcelona have agreed to buy disgraced Uruguay forward Luis Suarez from Liverpool, the two clubs said on July 11.
"The player will travel to Barcelona next week for a medical, sign a contract for the next five seasons and be presented as an FC Barcelona player," the Spanish team said in a statement.
Suarez was expelled from the World Cup in Brazil last month and given a nine-match competitive international ban as well as a four-month suspension from any soccer-related activities for biting Giorgio Chiellini.
After initially denying that he bit the Italy defender, the 27-year-old later issued a carefully-worded statement admitting his offence, the third time he has bitten an opponent during a match, and vowed there would be no repeat.
Suarez, who has also had stints at Dutch clubs Groningen and Ajax Amsterdam, netted 31 Premier League goals for Liverpool last season and the news of his deal with Barca came a day after the Catalan outfit agreed to sell Chile forward Alexis Sanchez to Arsenal.
The Uruguayan said he was leaving the English club "with a heavy heart" but moving to Spain had been "a lifelong dream and ambition." "Both me and my family have fallen in love with this club
and with the city," he said in a message to the Anfield fans on the website (www.liverpoolfc.com).
"This club did all they could to get me to stay but playing and living in Spain, where my wife's family live, is a lifelong dream and ambition. I believe now the timing is right.
"I wish (manager) Brendan Rodgers and the team well for the future. The club is in great hands and I'm sure will be successful again next season," said Suarez.
"I am very proud I have played my part in helping to return Liverpool to the elite of the Premier League and in particular back into the Champions League.
"Thank you again for some great moments and memories. You'll Never Walk Alone," he added in a reference to the club's famous anthem.