FIFA, players' union agree Suarez needs treatment

Published on NewsOK Modified: June 27, 2014 at 1:28 pm •  Published: June 27, 2014
Advertisement
;

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The players' union and football's governing body agree on one thing in the wake of the heavy ban imposed on Luis Suarez for his third biting incident: the Uruguay and Liverpool striker needs help.

Suarez returned to Montevideo early Friday, arriving too late to see the hundreds of Uruguay fans who had gathered the previous night to give him a hero's welcome despite his World Cup banishment.

In Rio de Janeiro, FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke said a third biting incident in Suarez's career was "unacceptable."

"I think he should find a way to stop doing it — he should go through a treatment," Valcke told reporters at Maracana Stadium, where Uruguay plays Colombia in a Round-of-16 match on Saturday.

The players' union, FIFPro, came to the same conclusion but from a more sympathetic approach.

FIFPro said the FIFA disciplinary panel's ban for Suarez of nine Uruguay matches and four months from all football "infringes his right to work" and doesn't offer him the treatment he needs.

"Luis Suarez should receive all the support he needs to deal with any off-field issues he may be experiencing at this time," the union said, adding that "treatment must be a part of any sanction."

Neither Valcke nor FIFPro specified if the treatment should include anger management therapy or counselling.

From Italy, Suarez also received support from his latest victim, Giorgio Chiellini, who described the sanction as excessive.

Suarez bit Chiellini's left shoulder during Uruguay's 1-0 win over Italy at Natal on Tuesday. The incident went unpunished by the referee but was broadcast around the world on TV.

It was the third time Suarez has bitten an opponent, after incidents in the Dutch and English leagues. He was banned for seven and 10 matches, respectively.

Continue reading this story on the...