FORMER Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has told want-away striker Luis Suarez to sort himself out as relations between the player and the club deteriorate.
Manager Brendan Rodgers is making the Uruguayan train on his own after Suarez accused him of reneging on a deal he claims was struck last summer which would allow him to leave should the club not qualify for the Champions League and receive a suitable offer.
The Reds boss has taken the unusual step of taking a hard line with his star player, with the full backing of owner John Henry who has arrived on Merseyside after watching yesterday’s friendly in Norway.
Henry has previously kept his distance from the issue, having been in communication with Rodgers and managing director Ian Ayre from America, but now has the chance to see for himself just how toxic the situation has become.
Carragher believes it is time his former team-mate started to realise how badly his behaviour in angling for a transfer reflects on him and the club.
“Sort yourself. You can’t have that and can’t accept that,” he offered as words of advice to the troublesome South American.
“There’s ways and means of going about it. Players get transferred all the time and you can’t always have what you want. He can’t carry on the way he’s been carrying on. Brendan Rodgers has come out and said that nobody is bigger than the club and that’s exactly right.
“If Suarez is a distraction for everyone then he needs to be taken out of the group. There will be agents and probably people at Arsenal talking to him but he’s a grown man. He’s not a kid, he’s got a family and he needs to make his own decisions and what’s right for him. It’s also how he’s coming across as a person to the Liverpool public and the country in general.
“Arsenal want to get the player, but sometimes you’ve got to remember how people are seeing the situation and how people are looking at you.”
Liverpool have so far rejected two offers from Arsenal for the 26-year-old, the second a bid of £40,000,001 which they thought would trigger a sale clause.
The Merseysiders have always maintained the £40million figure was only a point at which they had to open negotiations and not necessarily sell and Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive Gordon Taylor, having been called in to mediate, said he also understood that to be the case.
Carragher said the club were right to stand firm on the issue, especially if it meant keeping last season’s 30-goal leading scorer out of the clutches of one of their main rivals.
“Liverpool Football Club have got to protect themselves as well,” the recently-retired centre-back said. “Arsenal are a big rival for a top-four place and maybe if he wanted to go somewhere else it wouldn’t be such a big issue.
“Nobody wants unhappy players at the training ground or on the pitch playing. It affects other people. But it’s very difficult for Liverpool, like the Wayne Rooney situation with Manchester United and Chelsea.
“They’re direct rivals and that’s the big deal. That’s the problem.”