David James reckons the Reds are a better team without the Uruguayan forward…
Ex-Liverpool stopper David James believes that the Anfield club are a stronger team without Luis Suarez, Sky Sports reports.
James was at Liverpool between 1992 and 1999, but believes that when Suarez is in the side, the team focuses too much of its attention on him.
“On a purely footballing side of things, as talented an individual as he is, the problem I find is that everything seems to go through Luis Suarez,” said the 43-year-old.
“You have this talented player and there is no question about that but does it make the team better? I think there is so much hinging on Suarez that it is actually stopping Liverpool from progressing,” James continued.
Luis Suarez scored 30 goals in all competitions for the Reds last year, and if he hadn’t have been banned for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic towards the end of the season, he may well have pipped Gareth Bale to the Premier League Player of the Year award.
Suarez also completed more successful dribbles than any other player in the league, played the second most accurate attacking through balls, and took the most shots.
While James accepts that the 26-year-old Uruguayan is probably Liverpool’s most talented footballer, he believes that his talent forces the team to play through him.
“I think the club, in letting him go, can actually then develop a lot more unpredictability about them, in the sense that they will have more options to play,” said the ex-England keeper.
“(Daniel) Sturridge came in and was their second top goalscorer in half a season and you have Stevie G (Gerrard) there as always bolstering those numbers but there is so much focus on one player.
“Last season Liverpool finished seventh. I think without Suarez, they have a better chance (of finishing top-four).”
When Suarez was banned for the last four games of the season, Daniel Sturridge was given a more pivotal role in the side. The Englishman scored six goals, and the team won three and drew once.
While it could be argued that moving Suarez on would help other players step up and take more responsibility, it by no means would improve their squad. Suarez is Liverpool’s only world-class player, and won many matches single-handedly last term. Without him, the team look short of real class in the final third.
To read a full analytical piece on why Liverpool would be better off without Suarez, click here…