On 24 September 2020, after a tremendous six years in the Barcelona uniform, Luis Suarez left Camp Nou and signed for two years at Atletico Madrid. The departure was of course not the personal wish of the Uruguayan who was happy to stay in Catalonia with his good friend Leo Messi, but Suarez was not in Ronald Koeman’s plans who saw him as an older striker who could be less helpful to the new team he was trying to build. A year later, karma does not seem to be just a word and the clearest example of this is the case of Suarez and Koeman. Tomorrow (Saturday, 22:00) he meets the ex and the one who got rid of him once again, only this time as the Spanish champion who can finally decide the future of the Dutchman. The game, like all Spanish league games, will be broadcast on Channel ONE for HOT subscribers, yes subscribers, Cellcom TV and Partner TV.
The hunger to prove otherwise
The way in which Barcelona and Coman parted ways with Suarez was disrespectful to say the least. He is one of the greatest strikers in the history of the club, the third highest scorer in the history of the club with 198 goals, a rib out of one of the greatest third-pointers in history, but the club soon got rid of him without a proper farewell. The funny price tag in which he was released to Atletico, which stood at only 3 million euros, further reinforces the humiliation experienced by ‘El Pistolero’, as if he is a player who only wants to leave and does not really change the price.
But Suarez is an exciting driving player and that is exactly what made his move to Colchoneros so successful. Feeling that before his desire to succeed at Atletico, he first wanted to prove to Barcelona that they were wrong, and so it happened. He recorded a dream season last year with 21 league goals all the way to a rare championship with Atletico Madrid, after 7 years in which the Blaugrana and Real Madrid shared glory.
It seemed that in every action of the striker, whether it was a delivery, a move to the depth of an extension or a kick, he wanted to prove to everyone that they were wrong. Suarez felt that no one understood him, that he was light years away from his peak and he no doubt showed that last season. At the same time, in his only encounter so far with the ex last season he has not really been able to express himself and has not yet conquered against it, but perhaps the new status with which he comes this time to Wanda Metropolitino will also yield first goals that will make the final mark on the Catalans’ mistake.
The wheel that turned
Barça parted ways with Suarez in the summer of 2020 with no real attempt to find him a suitable replacement and paid dearly for it. Suddenly all the burden in the striker position fell on Antoine Griezmann who did not withstand the pressure, continued not to hurt and joined Al Pistolero in the Spanish capital this summer with an exciting comeback.
Needless to say, the injured Martin Braithwitt could not really be an alternative to striker scoring over 20 goals a season, with Enso Patti’s serious injury significantly hurting a team that failed in almost every aspect last season. If that wasn’t enough, Leo Messi, who was the man who carried all the offensive burden and was almost solely responsible for scoring goals last season, also left the club from Catalonia in a historic move to Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona were left very poor in attack this year.
In stark contrast to what has happened in Barcelona in the past year, the Uruguayan is experiencing a tremendous year at Atletico. He did not change a bit from the striker who was at Barça but remained exactly as he is, which is more than enough. The Colchoneros struggled throughout the season for the championship and ended up winning La Liga right in the final round, but all of that would not have happened without Suarez. He was the anchor on offense, the leader, the executor and the one who brought back to life a team that was a good few years out of the championship fight.
Suarez flourished again in Madrid, he did not need Coman’s favors and took on the challenge at Atletico. Now, it can be clearly said that he met the challenge perfectly and from now on everything he achieves is already a bonus. While the Catalan Empire has shattered its status it has crashed even more without him, and now, as Barcelona try to mend the rifts and rebuild, Suarez is coming back strengthened to face the club he once had at home and forgot about.
Suarez Loves Barcelona but has a lot of justified anger at the club’s behavior towards him. He himself said in a recent interview: “Yes, I believe in karma and destiny. They despise me and I do not forget how they sent me in preparation for last season to train alone. ” But the striker seems to believe in him is certainly not accidental. The Dutch coach of Barça who simply ignored him on his way out when one of the more ironic things would happen if a good performance by Suarez against the ex would result in the dismissal of the one who treated him with disrespect towards him.
Not the last dance
The beauty of Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid is that despite the renewal and construction for the future, the Argentine coach does not forget Suarez, who for his part still serves as the leading striker on the team. While Koeman dumped the Uruguayan without adding a world-class striker to step into his shoes, Cello kept Suarez as the number one option at the edge and gave him backing in the form of the talented Joao Felix and Antoine Griezmann and Mathieu Konya who joined this summer. Despite all these big names, Suarez is still the one leading the attack – something that testifies a lot to both the character of the striker and that of his coach.
In a sense the match between Atletico Madrid and Luis Suarez is from heaven. With how great the striker has been at Barça, he seems athletic and he is the same DNA. A tough team to a tough striker, a crazy coach who does not count anyone as one of the craziest players of the last generation, and although there are those who once again doubt and claim that at 34 it will be difficult for Suarez to provide receipts, it does not really seem that way.
Like last season, this time too Suarez serves as Simeone’s clutch player. Although the team arrives this year as a more legitimate candidate to win a second consecutive championship in Spain, it did not start the season well with 14 points out of 21 possible, but Suarez is on his own. He has already won the team two games in the 90th minute with a late double that made a comeback against Hattafa in the league and another critical winning goal in the Champions League against AC Milan at San Siro.
True, this is not the same energetic and fast striker from the days at Liverpool and Barcelona. Age did its thing and he changed, but the sharpness did not leave him. When he is in the open, he is still one of the best and most formidable pioneers in the world and it seems that over the years, and especially after leaving Barcelona he is only getting hungrier and hungrier and as everyone already knows – it is only a matter of time until the next bite arrives.
An entire season game: Atletico and Barça meet