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SL Ballon D’Or Top 10 – Nr 8: Luis Suarez

The Uruguay and Liverpool forward, Luis Suarez, was voted world’s number 8 by the Soccer-Laduma journalists.

The 26-year-old is definitely one of the most skilful players in world football, but his sheer endless will to win has unfortunately been driving him over the edge of fair-play a few times already.

Suarez creates scoring chances with his powerful shot, his aerial ability and remarkable technical skills. He has been praised for his work rate, his quickness and his mazy dribbles as well as the ability to slot the ball through opponent’s legs.

In 2006, Suarez left his home country and moved to Groningen in the Netherlands. He scored ten goals as a 19-year-old and was transferred to Ajax Amsterdam for €7.5m one year later.

In just three-and-a-half seasons, he scored 111 goals and assisted further 68 in 159 games for Ajax. He was made the club’s captain in 2009 and won the 2009-10 Dutch KNVB Cup. The same year he was also named Dutch Footballer of the Year.

In November 2010, he was labelled the "Cannibal of Ajax" after he bit an opposition player from PSV on the shoulder and was subsequently suspended for seven games by the KNVB.

Whilst still suspended for Ajax, Suarez moved to Liverpool for €26.5m in January 2011. In February 2012 he won his first trophy with the Reds, the League Cup.

On international level, Suarez represented Uruguay in the 2010 World Cup and played an important role in them finishing fourth. Again, he became famous for all the wrong reason, when he blocked an extra-time goal-bound header with his hands during the quarter-finals against Ghana.

Suarez helped his country with four goals to win the 2011 Copa America and was named Player of the Tournament. On 23 June 2013, he became Uruguay’s all-time record goal-scorer with 35 goals.

In his first one-and-a-half seasons at Anfield, Suarez only scored 15 goals, and despite receiving an eight match ban for racially abusing Patrice Evra, still finished sixth in the 2011 FIFA Ballon d’Or ranking .

In the beginning of the 2012-13 season, the Uruguay forward started to score consistently for Liverpool and finished the season with 23 goals. In doing so, he became only the third Liverpool forward after Robbie Fowler and Fernando Torres to surpass the 20-goals-per-season mark.

But unfortunately his maniac side again came to show in Liverpool’s match against Chelsea in April 2013, where he appeared to bite opposing player Branislav Ivanovic. He subsequently received a 10-match ban by the FA.

Ever since he has returned from this suspension, he has been in fine form, scoring 20 goals in just 15 games. He assisted a further 10 goals for his Liverpool teammates and has recently signed a new contract, which makes him the highest earner in the club’s history.

His goal-scoring records are astonishing as he scores a goal every 68 minutes this season and a hat-trick in every 17.4 games for the Reds.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says about his main striker: “He is definitely in that bracket of world-class with Messi and Ronaldo.”

There is nothing more to say, besides that Luis Suarez’ 2013 form reserved him the eights place in Soccer-Laduma’s world’s top 10 ranking. 

By David Kappel

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