As news reports continue to pour in on the actions of Luis Suarez, CBC Radio's Scott Regehr digs into the archives where he found some relevant information from his blog on the Uruguay striker last September. He reality checks some of his predictions on the troubled star.
Nine months ago, I predicted that Luis Suarez could easily end up being 2014's Ballon D'or winner as the world's top player.
My rationale basically boiled down to Suarez needing to do three things:
1. Prove himself as the best player in the best known league on Earth. Check.
- Suarez was named the English Premiership's top player by matching the record for goals in a season, even though he missed several matches at the start of the campaign because of suspension.
2. Lead Liverpool back to the Champions League and then thrive in that tournament. Check....mostly.
- Suarez almost single handedly led the Reds to a second-place finish in the Premier League and the Champions League berth that goes with it. Chances are, when Champions League play resumes this fall, he'll be behind any success his team has.
3. Help Uruguay get to the World Cup and then star in the tournament. Check.
- Suarez ended the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign as top scorer in the South American section with 11 goals. Uruguay beat Jordan in a playoff to earn its spot in Brazil. After losing their first match to Costa Rica without the injured Suarez, he returned to score twice against England and help them make it to the Round of 16.
Serious character flaws
While arguing the case for Suarez as the next World Player of the Year, I knew there were many "ifs" involved even if he checked the above boxes.
For instance, what if the likes of Messi, Neymar or Robben enjoyed a strong club and World Cup campaign? All of them have.
Here's how the rest of my blog last September read:
The biggest "if" though, is what if Suarez loses the plot again?
He has proven time and again he is his own worst enemy. That though, can be said for many mad soccer geniuses before him.
The likes of Best, Maradona and Zidane all showed they had serious character flaws on more than one big occasion.
I, for one, hope Luis Suarez can wrestle his demons and reach his potential. We know this much already.
Even if he fails, it'll be compelling to watch.
For the record, my predictions in sport seldom come off. That's why I'm happy to remind our readers when they do. I just wish I believed enough in Suarez's ability to self destruct to have followed the lead of this guy!
A Norwegian man placed a bet on Suarez biting someone in the Italy match and won big. pic.twitter.com/M6B9I3qTdk— Scott Regehr (@ScottRegehr) June 24, 2014