Luis Suarez: disgrace to humanity

 

The Sports Network

(SportsNetwork.com) - Luis Suarez's ability as a footballer cannot be questioned.

He is a world-class player capable of conjuring individual moments of brilliance with staggering regularity, and he produces a scoring rate that few in the professional game can rival.

But the problem encompassing Suarez is that he too often resorts to the "dark arts," overshadowing the exceptional bits of skill and breathtaking play that leaves spectators and opponents to marvel with envy.

That aspect of his game manifested itself on Tuesday when he committed a moment of madness in Uruguay's clash with Italy in World Cup action.

Such moments have become synonymous with Suarez over the course of his nine- year professional career as he has amassed a laundry list of transgressions.

For starters, Suarez is a diver. It is a never-ending problem for the Uruguayan. He embellishes contact by quickly going to ground, clutching any limb that may have been breathed upon in order to con the referee into giving a foul or caution against the opposition. Simulation is a rampant problem across the entire game, but the theatrical manner in which Suarez elaborates even the smallest of infractions makes the striker all the more insufferable.

Suarez further alienated himself from his peers by racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra during a Premier League match in 2011.

Like simulation, racial abuse has been the subject of much scrutiny as world governing bodies attempt to rid the game of such impurities, but the abuse traditionally has come from spectators hurling racial epithets at players instead of a player saying such things to one of his own. That, along with Suarez's almost comical defense that such behavior in his native Uruguay is commonplace, make the player's actions even more deplorable.

Suarez was given an eight-match ban and fined approximately $68,000 by the English Football Association.

But Tuesday's ordeal at the Estadio das Dunas takes the cake (pun intended).

The incident transpired in the 80th minute of the match when Suarez approached a back-tracking Giorgio Chiellini, leaned into the Italian defender and appeared to gnaw on his shoulder.

It was a shocking occurrence, but the most shocking aspect of it is that it's Suarez's third offense for biting another player.

In 2010, during his time in the Dutch Eredivisie with Ajax, Suarez approached PSV Eindhoven's Otman Bakkal during a stoppage of play and gnarled on the attacking midfielder's shoulder. Suarez, who apologized for his action, was banned for two matches and fined an undisclosed amount.

It was not even an isolated incident as Suarez, following a switch to Liverpool in 2011, inexplicably bit Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic during a Premier League clash last year. The Uruguayan was handed a stiffer penalty this time, accepting a 10-game suspension for his second offense.

Suarez now has a hat trick of nibbles to his name, and it's reached a point where the pattern-forming nature of his behavior is becoming quite worrisome.

That Suarez has not been able to curb his appetite for biting players on the pitch indicates that his behavior is instinctual. And with such instinctual carnivorous tendencies, it seems as though Suarez is legitimately unbalanced.

Most perplexing of all, Suarez, amid all of his indiscretions, positioned himself as the victim following his two-goal performance against England last week.

"Yes, I dreamed of this," the Uruguayan said after the match. "It was something I imagined many times but I had to calm myself down. I'm enjoying this moment, because of all I suffered, the criticism I received. So there you go..."

Keep enjoying it, Luis. Because biting a third player in four years makes you a disgrace to humanity.

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