Suarez signs new contract at Liverpool

Only four months after publicly pleading to leave the club in

the hope of joining Premier League rivals Arsenal, Luis Suarez has

completed a remarkable U-turn and signed a new long-term contract

at Liverpool.

The 26-year-old complained in August that Liverpool had broken

an agreement allowing him to leave after the club failed to qualify

for the Champions League. His complaint came shortly after

Liverpool had rejected a transfer bid from Arsenal for the

striker.

Liverpool stood firm however and Suarez began a dramatic period

of rehabilitation.

The Uruguay forward is the top scorer in the Premier League this

season with 17 league goals in 11 starts, including a quadruple

against Norwich and a hat trick against West Brom.

Tipped to shine at the World Cup next year, his form has helped

Liverpool climb to second in the division, two points behind

Arsenal.

”We have some great players and the team is growing and

improving all the time,” Suarez said. ”I believe I can achieve

the ambitions of winning trophies and playing at the very highest

level with Liverpool. My aim is to help get us there as quickly as

possible.”

Suarez missed Liverpool’s first six league games this season as

he completed a 10-match suspension for biting Chelsea defender

Branislav Ivanovic.

It was the latest in a long line of ugly incidents involving

Suarez, who was banned for eight matches for racially abusing

Manchester United’s Patrice Evra in October 2011.

Despite his habit for creating controversy, Liverpool supporters

have remained loyal to their talisman.

”Without doubt the backing I have received from the Liverpool

fans has influenced my decision,” he said. ”I am so proud to

represent them and go out to do my best for them every time I pull

on the shirt.

”We have a special relationship. They have love for me and in

return I love them back. I will always do my best for them and

hopefully we can achieve success together.”

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers made Suarez train alone after

his outburst in August but the striker returned to the first-team

squad before the start of the season.

The Reds are aiming to finish in the Premier League’s top four

to qualify for the Champions League and could mount a challenge for

the title if the team maintains its current form.

”This is fantastic news for everyone associated with the club;

the team, the owners and most importantly the supporters,” Rodgers

said.

”Luis is a world-class talent and securing his services is

crucial for what we are trying to achieve here.

”What’s most important and most exciting is that, at just 26

years old, his best years are still ahead of him and we now know

we’ll be seeing him reach that potential in a Liverpool

shirt.”

Suarez’s contract was due to expire in 2016.

Liverpool owner John W. Henry added: ”We are committed to

working hard to keep our best players and this is an indication

that we are moving in the right direction and moving at a pace that

impresses one of the best players in world football.”