Liverpool have rejected yet another offer for talisman striker Luis Suarez from Arsenal, further straining the relationship between the two clubs following a bold comment from the Reds’ owner, John Henry via Twitter.
The Gunners had tabled an offer of £40 million plus another £1 last night as they look to trigger a key clause in Suarez’s contract, a clause that allows the player to speak to other clubs should they offer a sum of over £40 million.
However, Liverpool remain adamant that the new bid was rebuffed and the club made it clear that the striker is simply not up for sale. The Reds have differed in their interpretation of the clause and insist that the clause only forces them to inform the player of an offer and not necessarily accept it.
The club’s owner, John W Henry, looked clearly unhappy with the offer made by the North London club and took Twitter to express his opinion, saying – “What do you think they’re smoking over there at Emirates?”
What do you think they’re smoking over there at Emirates?
— John W. Henry (@John_W_Henry) July 24, 2013
Henry’s tweet leaves a room for wild conjectures. One thing we can say with certainty is that – Liverpool value the player in the region of £50 million and more and are unwilling to sell their star striker to any rival Premier League club.
First, the contract – it is very hard to guess what is exactly written in Suarez’s contract, as this is an internal matter which Liverpool haven’t disclosed publicly. Media outlets are guessing that a clause has been inserted into his contract that says – Liverpool would allow Suarez to hold talks with any buyer club if that club puts up an offer of anything over £40 million.
Now, this is simply absurd, because, anything over £40 million can be any figures – it can be £44-50-55-60-70-or-even-41 million.
So, we don’t know exactly, how much is the buy-out clause of Suarez – therefore it is safe to assume that whatever Arsenal have offered wasn’t up to the mark of Suarez’ valuation.
Secondly, many are suggesting that Liverpool owner has messed it up as he probably got no idea about how a release clause functions, as according to them, Suarez should be allowed to speak with Arsenal, because they have trigged the clause. Therefore, his comment on Twitter would make him look ridiculously silly, provided there is anything like £40 million clause stipulated in Suarez’ contract.
But isn’t it funny and ludicrous at the same time to think that a well known sports business magnate has no clue what-so-ever about how a release clause functions? One can expect that with Venkys at the helm; not with an well-run organization like FSG.
Thirdly, the tone of the tweet raises few eyebrows. Mind, this is coming from a club’s owner – not any football fan or a club-based journalist.
In usual circumstances, a club can reject any offers if they deem insufficient as per their valuation, but how many times one has seen any club owner reacting like this, taking a snipe at other club, that too on a social media platform?
Liverpool have been dealing this issue with an iron-hand from day one, and the Reds have made it clear time and again that they don’t want to sell the striker, especially to any Premier League club. They had already rejected a £35 million bid from Arsenal and therefore an increment of just another £5 million has irked the owner of the club, as the offer seems disrespectful.
While Luis Suarez is set to request permission to hold further talks with Arsenal over a potential move, Liverpool are set to enter into a dispute over the clause with the player and his agent as both parties clearly interpret it differently. In such a scenario of a legal dispute, Suarez stands to gain with a leverage to force through a move.
As far as John Henry’ tweet is concerned, many are also suggesting that the tweet has not been posted by the owner himself, as it has happened before that his twitter account got hacked. To them, probably, the same situation has happened here too.
Whether or not, the tweet has been posted by the owner himself is secondary here – the crucial thing is the implication it can have on everybody.
Liverpool might not entertain any more offers from Arsenal, even if it is good and tempting enough. Suarez will get a clear picture that he is valued at the club and that Liverpool are unwilling to sell him in the summer. He wants to play Champions League and the club respects that too, but here his personal ambitions can disrupt the progress of the club massively if he joins a rival club, hence Liverpool will either tell him to focus on his career at Anfield or hope that Real Madrid or any other foreign club come up with a good offer, so that his wishes can be fulfilled too.