Sport World Cup

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Adidas executives hold emergency meeting to discuss Luis Suarez bite controversy

Luis Suarez
Luis Suarez
Liverpool have refused to comment on Luis Suarez's latest flashpoint
Joey Barton believes Luis Suarez is a winner who occasionally crosses the line
Luis Suarez is facing a lengthy ban for his latest indiscretion.
A leading employment lawyer believes Liverpool could potentially sue Luis Suarez for breach of contract

Adidas, one of Luis Suarez's leading sponsors, have held a meeting to discuss the third bite of the striker's controversial career.

Suarez, twice convicted of biting earlier in his career, on Tuesday night appeared to bite Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during Uruguay's defeat of Italy and faces a lengthy ban and has until 9pm tonight to respond to a FIFA investigation.

Following his previous biting incident with Ivanovic, Adidas reminded the striker of his responsibilities and there is a real prospect that they may go a step further this time.

Executives from the sportswear manufacturer met in Rio de Janeiro met to discuss the latest incident on Wednesday.

An adidas spokesperson said: "adidas is aware of the issue involving Luis Suarez. We await FIFA's full investigation into this matter and will respond accordingly."

Former Liverpool captain and assistant manager Phil Thompson said Suarez had "brought embarrassment and shame" on the Anfield club.

"You think of the support the guy has had from Brendan Rodgers, (owner) John Henry and majority of the fans at Liverpool," Thompson told Sky Sports News.

"He's had massive support. It was like a kick in the face."

Thompson believes the alleged bite at a World Cup means there will be even more scrutiny than Suarez's other transgressions.

"It's happened on the international stage," he said.

"This is worse. This is the world's media. Everyone is looking at this and wanting to see what happens. At the end of the day he is a Liverpool player. He plays for my football club. He's brought embarrassment and shame on our football club.

"For him to do this is a massive shock. It's been disgraceful to be honest."

Gambling company 888poker announced they are "reviewing" their relationship with brand ambassador Suarez in the wake of the incident with Chiellini.

It wrote on Twitter: "Following recent allegations made against Luis Suarez, we are reviewing our relationship with him. We will not tolerate unsporting behaviour."

Paul Scholes believes a 10-match ban or a suspension for the remainder for the World Cup tournament would not be sufficient punishment for Suarez.

Former England and Manchester United midfielder Scholes told "Luis Suarez was banned for 10 games for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic in April 2013. That obviously wasn't enough.

"On Tuesday night, with the biting incident on Italy's Giorgio Chiellini during Uruguay's Group D clash, Suarez embarrassed his club, country and family.

"Banning him for the rest of the World Cup is not enough, because Colombia will beat Uruguay in their next game anyway."

Scholes thinks Suarez's behaviour will overshadow his ability as a footballer in the minds of the viewing public.

"He will feel terrible, and the entire incident is such a shame because he's a tremendous player," Scholes added.

"But people will remember Suarez now for his biting antics at this World Cup rather than his supreme footballing ability."

Joey Barton has suggested Suarez's apparent bite is something which "comes with the territory" of being a winner.

Barton, no stranger to controversy himself, wrote on Twitter: "I love Suarez. I love his passion for the game. I would have him on my team everyday of the week. I am also aware you can't defend him here.

"All things considered I'd rather receive a bite than a leg breaking challenge. Whilst he should be punished, it is not the end of the world.

"He's a winner. If that means he occasionally steps over the line between right and wrong, than thats what comes with the territory...

"Nobody's perfect..."

Former Liverpool and England striker Robbie Fowler thinks the Reds may sell Suarez after his latest apparent indiscretion.

Barcelona and Real Madrid have been linked with making big-money bids for the Uruguayan this summer.

"You can't defend him," Fowler told talkSPORT.

"Off the pitch he's an absolutely lovely fella. He does so much work for charity, does so much work in the community in Liverpool

"And I love him as a player, but you cannot condone what he has done.

"When he gets on the pitch he just becomes a different person. I'm flummoxed for words.

"It's a real, real tough predicament most Liverpool fans are in. They love him as a player, but he's continually dragging the club's name through the mud again.

"It's not right, especially after how they helped him last time. They tried to rehabilitate him.

"I wouldn't be surprised if he went now."

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