What Does Luis Suarez's Injury Mean for the World Cup?
The World Cup is set to lose one of its most enigmatic figures with the news of a looming knee surgery for Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez. Easily one of he best players in the world, Luisâ€™s World Cup dreams have turned into nightmares after suffering a meniscus injury in training. Uruguayan officials believe the initial injury occurred in the last Liverpool game of the season, but was re-aggravated earlier this week. This is a blow not only to Uruguay, who now face an even more daunting task of escaping Group D, but to soccer fans around the world. Luis is one of the most polarizing figures in the sport. You either love him, or you love to hate him.
Coming off his most prolific season yet, which saw Suarez net 31 goals for Liverpool in 33 appearances, Luis was named the PFA and Football Writersâ€™ Player of the year. But it hasnâ€™t always been this easy going. He started the year off missing the first eight games due to an FA ban which had carried over from the previous season, for biting Chelsea player Branislav Ivanovic (the second time he has bitten a player on the pitch). He has been labeled a diver by ex-Everton and Manchester United manager David Moyes, who claims Suarez is the reason people are put off by the game. Luis was also subject to transfer rumors this summer, one from Arsenal which prompted Liverpool owner John W. Henry to tweet, â€œWhat do you think are they smoking over there at the Emirates?â€
With all of that going on in the background, once Luis got on the field, his talent took over. Liverpool exceeded everyoneâ€™s expectations this season, finishing second to Manchester City. They missed out on the title by two points, which is a far cry from the 28 points in the previous season.
The 27 year old is in the peak of his career and to miss out on the World Cup must be devastating. Recovery from an operation such as this one normally takes between four and six weeks. Uruguay is hopeful that Suarez will be back sooner rather then later; but he will surely miss the first match on June 14 against Costa Rica, and is also a doubt for matches against England and Italy. If Uruguay, the 12th-best team according to our nERD rankings, manages to pass through to the next round, he has an outside chance of playing. Currently, our numbers give Uruguay a 68.39% chance of escaping their group.
Luis Suarez stirs up controversy in every game. He complains to referees (sometimes punching them), he argues with opponents, he fights for every ball, he draws an inordinate amount of fouls and he may even dive. But one thing Suarez definitely does is make you pay attention, and to have a player of his caliber miss the tournament is a blow to us all.