Premier League - Suarez: Liverpool did all they could to convince me to stay

Luis Suarez says Liverpool did everything in their power to keep him, but the lure of Spain and Barcelona proved too strong.

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Both clubs announced on Friday that a deal has been agreed to take the striker to the Liga club.

It is reported that Suarez will cost Barcelona £75m, despite being banned for four months after his infamous bite on Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup finals.

Suarez has also put Liverpool through a number of controversies - having racially abused Patrice Evra and bitten Branislav Ivanovic - but his performances with the ball at his feet have been magnificent.

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After helping Liverpool back into the Champions League and almost to the Premier League title last season, the striker says he leaves with his head held high.

"It is with a heavy heart that I leave Liverpool for a new life and new challenges in Spain," he told the club's official website. "Both me and my family have fallen in love with this club and with the city.

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"But most of all I have fallen in love with the incredible fans. You have always supported me and we, as a family, will never forget it, we will always be Liverpool supporters.

"I hope you can all understand why I have made this decision. This club did all they could to get me to stay, but playing and living in Spain, where my wife's family live, is a lifelong dream and ambition. I believe now the timing is right.

"I wish Brendan Rodgers and the team well for the future. The club is in great hands and I'm sure will be successful again next season.

"I am very proud I have played my part in helping to return Liverpool to the elite of the Premier League and in particular back into the Champions League.

"Thank you again for some great moments and memories. You'll Never Walk Alone."

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers added: "Luis is a very special talent and I thank him for the role he has played in the team in the past two years, during my time at Liverpool.

"I think he would be the first to accept he has improved as a player over that period, along with the team and has benefited from being here, as we have benefited from him.

"The club have done all they can over a sustained period of time to try to keep Luis at Liverpool. It is with great reluctance and following lengthy discussions we have eventually agreed to his wishes to move to Spain for new experiences and challenges. We wish him and his young family well; we will always consider them to be friends."

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