Walking through town during the week I spotted a buddy of mine heading my way.
This was a little bit awkward..
Just two weeks ago his wife had passed away after losing a horrible three year battle with cancer. The last time I saw him was at the funeral home where I joined the huge queue of mourners, shook his hand. gave him a hug and did the same with his children. “So sorry” …it’s about as much as I was able to muster up at the time. His wife had always been so great to me…I’ll miss her.
Face to face for the first time since the funeral home we stopped and chatted.
“How are you doing?” while this was an obvious question I felt awful asking it ..what was I expecting? “I’m ok” he said.
“What did you make of the Luis Suarez incident?” I asked, quickly changing the subject
We stood there for 15 minutes debating the issue. He felt Suarez was a disgrace and deserved a huge ban and Liverpool FC should be glad to just get rid of him. As a huge Liverpool and Suarez fan I disagreed.
The ban was about FIFA reacting to huge pressure – Suarez seems to be a nice guy, he is respected by his team mates and in England he was recently voted by the other players as the Players Player of the Year. This is the highest honour in England voted by his teammates and opponents – if he was an aggressive, dirty, dangerous player that no one respected he would not have got this huge award.
Added to this he is a truly incredible footballer who is a gift to the sport and for me the objective with the punishment should have been to rehabilitate a player with some unusual psychological problem rather than this incorrect and brutal show of power.
The punishment was to Uruguay, Liverpool FC, football fans everywhere and of course to Luis ….none of it in my view dealing responsibly with the unusual problem that he has.
We debated, we chatted and for a while all that existed was Luis Suarez and the World Cup.
We both went on our way.
Thank god for Luis Suarez, the World Cup and all those things that keep life moving along even in our darkest days