Wenger Praises this Barcelona Striker Even After he Snubbed a Move to Arsenal

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has heaped praise on Luis Suarez, who is set to turn out for Barcelona in the Champions League last 16 showdown on Tuesday.

Wenger revealed that he no longer dream about what could happened if he signed Suarez from Liverpool in 2013 when he had a bid rejected, but he remain an admired from afar.

“I used to think ‘what if I signed Luis Suarez’ before, but not now,” the Frenchman said.

Suarez had earlier revealed that he was dissuaded from joining Arsenal by former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard.

“Arsenal’s interest in me was very public, I don’t think it is any secret. I had a private conversation with Stevie [Gerrard] after training, and he told me to give Liverpool another season, and wait for Barcelona. Looking back, now it is one of the most important conversations of my life, but that is Stevie, he was a captain who was always ready to give his players advice,” Suarez said.

Although he snubbed a move to Arsenal, this hasn’t prevent Wenger from admiring his style of play.

“He gives camaraderie to a team. He did it at Liverpool and he did it playing with Edinson Cavani and Diego Forlan for Uruguay, and did it well,” Wenger explained.

“Suarez is the kind of guy who manages to create that spirit in teams. Apart from the individual talent the three have, they also have a good understanding, cohesion and great solidarity. I have seen that Lionel Messi gave the ball to Suarez from a penalty, because he wanted him to be the best goal-scorer. When you see someone like Messi – who had the opportunity to score his 300th goal – do that, it means there’s really something there.

“Individually, all their players are difficult to stop. We have to find a way to do it collectively. We have to analyse what we do and do it well and together. We have to keep Suarez quiet on Tuesday night.”

Although Wenger is greatly concerned about Barca’s deadly attacking trio pf Suarez, Neymar and Messi, he is still determined that his side will do the best to suppress them.

Wenger who signed Sanchez from Barcelona, believes that the Chilean will be an essential part of his squad on Tuesday.

“Don’t worry about Tuesday, he’ll be tuned in. He is about focus, Sanchez,” Wenger said.
“I don’t think he was completely ready to come on (against Hull in the FA Cup on Saturday). It looked like that, but he grows with the game. He has a game based on risk and so when he’s not completely, completely highly tuned in, it becomes dangerous.”