Barcelona forward Luis Suarez admitted he was concerned for his future in the days following his four-month FIFA ban for biting Giorgio Chiellini but is now putting the saga behind him.
The Uruguayan provoked uproar at the World Cup over the summer after being found guilty of biting an opponent for the third time in his career during the South American side’s clash with Italy.
He was initially banned from all football-related activity for four months, as well as nine international matches, although that did not stop Barcelona from making the 27-year-old their marquee summer signing from Liverpool.
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Suarez: I’ve dreamed of playing for Barça for years
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Luis Suarez came off the bench to make his first appearance for Barcelona in a 6-0 thrashing of Leon in Monday night’s friendly match at the Camp Nou. Thirty-one days after he signed for the club, Suarez ran out on the pitch to great applause as he was finally unveiled as a Barcelona player in the pre-match build-up.
The 27-year-old, who was cleared to make his debut in the friendly by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, despite currently serving a four-month ban from competitive football for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during the FIFA World Cup™, was named on the bench.
Real Madrid’s Italian manager refused to reveal his line-up for tomorrow’s first leg against Atleti, but did confirm that Iker Casillas will start in goal for the European Champions.
Will Casillas start? And in the league?
Iker will play. He’s training and has the confidence of everyone. After that we’ll see.
Could the goalkeeper change for Friday?
I don’t know, I’m not thinking about Friday’s game yet.
Di María is available like all the rest. He could start the game and have his chance, but just like the other players. Tomorrow one team will play, and it’ll be a different one on Friday.
Barcelona boss Luis Enrique addressed the media ahead of his side’s Gamper Trophy match tonight and indicated that despite a busy summer in the transfer market that Barcelona are not finished bringing in new players.
Is the squad finalised?
I’m not saying it’s closed. Not me, nor anyone at the club. You always look to strengthen and you always have to be the strongest.
What are your first impressions of Luis Suárez?
In the two sessions that he’s been in you can see he’s a top level player. I know how we play and fits the profile, and I’d like to be able to give him some minutes tomorrow as a reward for the work he’s done on his own.
La Liga champions Atletico Madrid have an early season chance to avenge their defeat to Real Madrid in May’s UEFA Champions League final in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup on Tuesday.
Despite having arguably Atletico’s best ever season, Diego Simeone’s men have still suffered from the departure of a number of key players over the close season as Filipe Luis and Diego Costa joined Chelsea and Thibaut Courtois returned to Stamford Bridge after a three-year loan spell.
Barcelona head coach Luis Enrique has confirmed Luis Suarez will play in the pre-season clash on Monday.
The head coach says he has been impressed by the Uruguayan in training this weekend and will give him some playing time in the Gamper Trophy
The Uruguayan returned to training this weekend after the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) reduced his ban from football to allow him to take part in training and club friendly matches.
And Luis Enrique has been sufficiently impressed by Suarez to allow him some playing time in Monday’s Gamper Trophy encounter.
Uefa has announced its three contenders for its UEFA’s Best Player in Europe Award and they are Bayern Munich and Germany World Cup winning goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, Holland and Bayern winger Arjen Robben and Real Madrid and Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo.
The winner will be announced on 28 August in Monaco, where the draw for the group stage of the UEFA Champions League is taking place. A jury made up of journalists from the 54 member associations of UEFA will decide the winner.
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Uefa Nominates Neuer, Robben And Ronaldo For Player Of The Year
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Barcelona have confirmed that goalkeeper Marca-Andre Ter Stegen has suffered a back injury in training.
The German shot-stopper arrived at Camp Nou this summer from Borussia Monchengladbach.
But after only a few pre-season matches, the Blaugrana have revealed that the youngster has picked up a knock at the club’s training base.
Luis Enrique’s men admitted via a statement on their official website that medical tests had confirmed that Ter Stegen has a ‘lumbar contortion’.
However, the Catalan outfit have refused to determine how long the injury will keep him out for.
It was billed as the triumphant return of Gareth Bale to Cardiff but Cristiano Ronaldo showed why he is still the best player in the world as his two goals led Real Madrid to a comfortable win in the UEFA Super Cup in Cardiff over Sevilla 2-0.
Bale, who joined Real from Tottenham Hotspur in a world record £86m deal last summer, showed his class throughout and it was from his precision cross that Ronaldo scored his opener.
Gareth Bale has targeted Champions League and La Liga double glory as he prepares to start the season in his native Cardiff. Wales star Bale will be part of a formidable Real Madrid strikeforce when the UEFA Champions League holders meet UEFA Europa League winners Sevilla in the Super Cup at the Cardiff City Stadium on Tuesday night.
Madrid signed FIFA World Cup™ sensation James Rodriguez from Monaco for £63m this summer and the Colombian will join Bale, FIFA Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema in the Madrid forward line at Cardiff. That firepower has convinced many pundits Madrid will become the first club to successfully defend European football’s greatest prize in the Champions League era after their tenth title last season.