Luis Suarez has hit back at Roy Hodgson’s claims that the Liverpool and Uruguay striker is not yet world class.
He scored two impressive goals against England on Thursday night to leave them on the brink of an early World Cup exit but the manager still refused to concede that Suarez is among the game’s best.
The manager had said similar before the tournament in Brazil and the striker was quick to bite back. Suarez told El Observador: “The England coach said I was a proven Premier League player, but not world class.
“So there is the answer. He sees me all year and he knows my worth as a player and a person. It takes courage and character to keep moving forward.”
Suarez was emotional after his match-winning impact against England after making a speedy recovery from knee surgery and appears to have been determined to make the most of his moment in the England World Cup spotlight.
He is also reported to have claimed that his strikes were retribution, for all the criticism he has received for his conduct with Liverpool in the Premier League.
But, amazingly, Suarez also says he was only half fit. He said: “I was probably only 50% fit – but it is due to the work of all the fantastic doctors and physiotherapist that I was able to be 50% ready – and I am thankful that that was enough to beat England,” he told Uruguayan website Tenfield.
“I have some more days to get ready for the next game now – and the more I train the sharper and more ready I will be. It was a fantastic result – but it is not the job done. We need to make sure we go and get the right result against Italy – and then if we progress out of the group we can start to dream about what is possible.”