Sport Premier League

Sunday 21 September 2014

Rodgers becomes peacemaker after Williams broadside at Suarez

Carl Markham

Published 24/11/2012 | 05:00

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Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers is confident there will be no animosity between striker Luis Suarez and Swansea defender Ashley Williams this weekend after acting as mediator to diffuse any potential difficulties.

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The Swans defender was heavily critical of Suarez in an extract from his Premier League diary recounting last season, their first in the Premier League, published this week.

Williams was quoted as saying the Uruguay international was "streets ahead of any player I've truly disliked" and he wanted to "knock him out" for the player's diving antics.

Rodgers was taken aback when he read those comments and has spoken to Williams, who in turn has talked to Suarez, in an attempt to prevent the situation escalating ahead of tomorrow's match at the Liberty Stadium.

"I have spoken to Ash and Ash has spoken with Luis so there is no issue there," said Rodgers, who along with Joe Allen returns to the club they left in June.

The fact Rodgers was able to use his good relationship with his former club to intervene in the matter has no doubt helped avoid any lingering ill-feeling.

Last season Suarez's disdain for Patrice Evra was one of a number of high-profile public relations disasters by the club and Rodgers was keen to avoid things getting out of hand tomorrow.

Key to Rodgers' success in south Wales was his close friendship with chairman Huw Jenkins and Rodgers feels things are working well with Liverpool's principal owner John Henry and chairman Tom Werner.

"It was so refreshing speaking to a chairman who had a clear identity of how the club worked all based around simplicity and a philosophy that has been going for many years. I believe it can be replicated at Liverpool. Simplicity is the key."

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