Friday, June 27, 2014

Full 90: Another one BITES the... dust?


He’s done it again. FIFA has handed Luis Suarez, the Uruguayan striker and member of Liverpool F.C., a four-month ban for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini during their match Tuesday. This is Suarez’s third time committing such an act. 



Effective immediately, Suarez is barred to compete in the rest of the 2014 World Cup and is banned for nine international matches. As part of his four-month ban from “soccer-related activities”, Suarez is unable to train or play with his Liverpool club. Subsequently, Suarez will miss nine Premier League games and three Champions League matches. Additionally, he has been fined $112,000.

Uruguay’s Football Association President Wilmar Valdez, team officials, and even the nation’s president, believe the ban is too severe and is part of a conspiracy by Italy, English football, and Brazilian World Cup officials to remove the most complete player in soccer, right now, from the competition. While I can assure Mr. Valdez and company that FIFA’s stance on the situation is by no means a scam. The only thing conspicuous about the situation is that Suarez, a 27-year-old-full-grown-man, continues to bite other full-grown men on the field, out of frustration.

Critics have said FIFA has overstepped its boundary in banning Suarez, to impact his English Premier League duties with Liverpool. Suarez, who has committed this act twice before, gnawing on Otman Bakkal of PSV Eindhoven in 2010 and Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic in 2012, has now claimed his third victim. For the first time he’s bitten someone while wearing a Uruguayan uniform. This ban transcends any uniform. It is greater than the sport, the money, the World Cup- this ban is about reforming a twisted man, who also happens to be the best soccer player at the moment.

Suarez's banishment from the tournament came just hours after Ghana's Football Association sent home Kevin-Prince Boateng, for verbally abusing a coach during a training session, and Sulley Muntari, for punching a staff member, with indefinite suspensions. 

Adidas has revealed it will drop Luis Suarez from all commercial activities relating to the World Cup. The company has yet to decide if it will cut all sponsorship ties with him.

  
Out of all the muck that surrounds this situation, one thing is definite; Suraez, with a diverse palate, is not afraid to try new things.


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Matt Puzio is a pre-junior in Drexel’s Sport Management program. From West Windsor, NJ, Matt is an active member of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity. Matt has assisted Drexel professor, Dr. Ellen Staurowsky, in her Title IX research which resulted in a publication and a chance to speak at the 2013 NCAA Scholarly Colloquium. Matt has completed his first Co-op with Trenton Thunder.  Follow Matt on Twitter @mattypuz.

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