Early Doors

Suarez signature a major boon for Rodgers

Yesterday Luis Suarez signed a new contract at Liverpool. You can be sure he shook hands on the deal more enthusiastically than has been the case in the past.

As is the way of things these days, the club would not disclose the length of the deal, simply describing it as "long term".

Arsenal did the same yesterday when announcing that Santi Cazorla is now officially a Gunner. Quite what is to be achieved by not officially confirming the length of the deal when it is reported almost everywhere that Suarez has committed to Liverpool for another four years is anyone's guess.

The announcement was only made via official channels last night, but not before the club's television channel had prematurely broken the news just after lunchtime. The short bulletin was cut off mid-sentence, but not before the message was out - and at least one quick-thinking viewer had posted the footage online.

While the 'gaffe' is about as significant as the Fenway Sports Group-owned NESN network writing that Liverpool had signed Clint Dempsey three weeks ago — i.e. not significant at all — such an amateurish mishap is still enough to raise a chuckle from those looking in. After all, you would never see the more highbrow, traditional news sources making such a glaring error, right?

In any case, the deal was confirmed a few hours later, on just the second day of Suarez's return to Melwood following Uruguay's underwhelming Olympic campaign.

The Sun reports that "LUIS SUAREZ has TREBLED his Liverpool wages", as ever taking care to cater for those who are unable to identify the key words in any given sentence. No wonder the 25-year-old is so delighted.

He said: "To sign a new contract with Liverpool is unbelievable for me because I am so happy here at both the club and also in the city.

"That is important for me and I am very happy with my new contract.

"When you are a kid, everybody wants to play for Liverpool. I am here now and it is a dream for me, and now I am a Liverpool fan.

"I am happy off the pitch because the people of Liverpool are good with me and my family. I try my best on the pitch and when you are happy off the pitch, you are happy on the pitch."

That last point is perhaps the most important for those concerned that Suarez was considering leaving, with Serie A champions Juventus supposedly heading the list of clubs looking to sign him. The race row which saw him banned for eight matches for things he said to Manchester United's Patrice Evra and then the ensuing controversy of him refusing to shake the Frenchman's hand upon their next encounter could have been reason enough for him to decide that working in another country with a less hysterical press might have been the right course of action.

Although the chances of the Uruguayan leaving Anfield after just 18 months on Merseyside were probably never that high, it is nevertheless a real result for new manager Brendan Rodgers to get one of the Premier League's best players to renew his vows.

In effect, Suarez is endorsing Rodgers as the man to lead the club back up the table and into Europe after a torrid period which began in the final days of Rafael Benitez and ended in FA Cup final defeat via an almighty ownership row in the High Court.

Rodgers has already had plenty on his plate in his first summer in the job — an early Europa League trip to Belarus after just a couple of pre-season games, persistent questions and speculation about Andy Carroll, Charlie Adam injuring Tottenham's Gareth Bale and the ensuing war of words between the two via the media, working out what exactly a Jordan Henderson is for — but Suarez signing up for his cause is a real boon for him and the club.

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QUOTE OF THE DAY: "It's a massive, massive worry for us but the most important thing right now is Robert's health and we are keeping our fingers crossed he'll be okay. He started to feel unwell last week ... and then felt a lot worse over the weekend." Stoke City manager Tony Pulis reveals defender Robert Huth has suspected meningitis and is awaiting the outcome of hospital checks.

FOREIGN VIEW: "He's the best doctor in the world. The doctor is a great, great man. He's more than a doctor. He takes me to dinner, looks after me, comes in on weekends to treat me and make sure I'm okay. I thank him for all he has done for me." - Usain Bolt thanks Bayern Munich and Germany team doctor Hans Wilhelm Mueller-Wohlfahrt for the role he played in helping him win the men's 100m final.

COMING UP: We have two doses of live football action for you this evening. First there is HJK Helsinki v Celtic in the third qualifying round of the Champions League 18:00, before Manchester United take on Barcelona in Gothenburg at 19:00 in a pre-season friendly.

The Olympic action just keeps on coming, with 16 gold medals on the line today. You can watch another full day on British Eurosport HD or via the Eurosport Player, or follow our live commentary online.