Suspension puts bite on World Cup player In this June 24, 2014 file photo, Uruguay's Luis Suarez holds his teeth after biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini's shoulder during the group D World Cup soccer match between Italy and Uruguay in Natal, Brazil (AP photos)
Suspension puts bite on World Cup player

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Luis Suarez is ready to put his biting days behind him.

The Barcelona striker was officially presented to fans on Tuesday at an event delayed for more than five weeks because of his suspension for biting an opponent at the World Cup.

Suarez said he was ready to "erase" his history of bad behavior and start fresh with the Catalan club.

"I say to all the fans, don't worry, because I won't do that anymore," the former Liverpool striker said.

Suarez sunk his teeth into the shoulder of Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup in June, earning him a four-month ban and further damaging his already tarnished reputation. The Court of Arbitration for Sport lessened his penalty last week, allowing him to start practice with Barcelona on Friday and play the final minutes of a friendly on Monday.

The Uruguay forward won't play a competitive match until October.

"The suspension is what it is, and I have to accept it," Suarez said. "After what happened I didn't want to do anything. I was depressed. But while I was with my wife and children I had to accept reality. I asked for forgiveness as I had to do, and now I have to think about the present."

Suarez refused to go into details about what he considered was at the root of his violent behavior. He called it a "private" issue that he was treating with the "appropriate professionals."

But the volatile former Ajax forward did say that after his latest bite he was worried about his career.

"Of course I was worried, but not only about the transfer (to Barcelona), but also about myself, for what I had done. I try to erase it," he said. "The lesson I take from it is personal. I try to forget it."

At 27, Suarez has accumulated three multi-match suspensions for sinking his teeth into an opponent. He has also been suspended for making racist remarks.

Barcelona vice president Jordi Mestre said Suarez cost the club 81 million euros ($108 million). Media reports had said the deal was for about 97 million euros ($129 million). Mestre added that Suarez's buyout clause has been set at 200 million euros ($267 million).

"It hurts not playing for Barcelona but it hurts even more not playing for my country," Suarez said. "I love my country. The fact that I will miss the next Copa America hurts very much. But I have to try and forget it."

Critical thinking challenge: Why is Barcelona keeping Luis Suarez with all his problems?

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Assigned 43 times

  • ericvo-Sch
    8/20/2014 - 11:38 a.m.

    Why in the world would you bite someone? Especially when you are in the middle of a soccer game. he deserved to be punished .

  • shelbys-Sch
    8/20/2014 - 11:41 a.m.

    I really think giving him another chance is really nice. All people deserve a second chance but they really have to prove it that they changed. I really hope he does change and can stay in the game for a little longer.

  • haleyb-Sch
    8/20/2014 - 01:58 p.m.

    I have been bit before in soccer but it did not hurt. That guy should have been taken out for the rest of the game and for ever. I think that he is really stupid and that would hurt.

  • tannerw-Sch
    8/20/2014 - 02:00 p.m.

    For one why would u bit a person thats just really sad that he did that to a innocent person that was playing right and if i was a reff and that he did that 3 times i would not let him play anymore for the rest of his life.

  • coadyc-Sch
    8/20/2014 - 03:21 p.m.

    He should have been kicked out of soccer permanently, because he should of known better. It should have been in the practice and training. He should have known better anyway.

  • tybreland
    8/22/2014 - 08:58 a.m.

    It's a shame that you playing for your country that you just bite someone.I can understand why you bite someone,That he was trying win. I would hate for the person that got bitten bitten by him,he should be ashamed of himself.I would just try to get him back for him.

  • CeceliaBa-Moo
    8/22/2014 - 11:55 a.m.

    I can't believe that he actually bit another player. When you do that a lot and it gets put on your records and it can ruin your career.

  • LukeT-Moo
    8/22/2014 - 11:56 a.m.

    Wow I have never heard of somebody biting another player in the world cup! I feel bad for Giorgio Chiellini. I wonder if Luis Suarez drew blood. I am a really big fan of soccer and have never heard of anything like this.

  • RyleighB-Moo
    8/22/2014 - 11:57 a.m.

    I don't really understand why he would have bit a player. He says it was a "personal" problem with his opponent, but that still doesn't make it okay to bite somebody. I think it was a good call that he got suspended from his team and from all the games. I personally think that was ridiculous to bite somebody, during a game, just because he had a problem with his opponent.

  • MackenzieL-Moo
    8/22/2014 - 11:59 a.m.

    I think Luis Suarez is doing a great thing by starting fresh with Barcelona. I think the whole bite not only left a mark on Giorgio Chiellini but also on Suarez it has hurt his career and like he said he was depressed. I think Barcelona is keeping Suarez because he is a great player and alongside Messi and Neymar that team could beat Real Madrid for the Champions Cup. Like Real Madrid they now have an attacking trio. I don't think the Barcelona manager cares to much about his problems.

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