Full transcript of Luis Suarez interview: I feel happy and valued at Barça

The Barcelona striker spoke exclusively to SPORT this week at a Puma event

Luis Suárez: Me siento feliz y valorado en el Barça | Maite Jiménez

Albert Masnou / Jordi Gil

Here is the full transcript of Barcelona striker Luis Suarez's exclusive interview with SPORT: 

How does Luis Suarez interpret football? What's football for you? Arturo Vidal, for example, defines himself as a warrior. He interprets it as a battle. 

I don't know how to explain it, but I can say that I live every game with the same intensity. I have the feeling that I have suffered so much to reach here in the game, that I am not going to switch off for one minute or not fight for any ball. I always have to fight. That's my character and way of being. 

Are hunger and spirit your main virtues? 

Yes, wanting it, wanting to succeed, always believing in yourself and your objectives. I'm proud to have come through tough moments in my career, moments that others would have struggled to pick themselves up from and, luckily, I have the strength to believe in myself and to overcome those bad moments. 

When you see footballers that are indifferent, speaking of players in general, not at Barcelona, what do you think? 

Each person has their way of being. You have to adapt to every club, teammate or national team. With Uruguay, we speak a lot and we are constantly motivating each other. At Barcelona, we don't speak as much. When I arrived, I saw that they were used to another type of preparation before games and they've always won that way. You can't change these things. 

Would it be right to have to push some teammates a bit more?

No, each player has their way of focusing, their way of being and preparing for games. There are some that eat pasta and I don't like to eat past because I feel bloated. Others eat two meals the day of a game. They're different ways of preparing that each player has. 

When Uruguay fall, they always do so on their feet. That doesn't happen at Barça. Is it difficult to translate that spirit into a team?

It's complicated. The mentality of some is that you don't win anything by shouting. I think sometimes it can wake you up. Maybe that's where we've made a mistake, but that's the habit, the way of the players. 

Not yours?

No, not at all, but, even at my age, I hold myself back with certain things. Speaking with teammates... I think that I am going to shout at a teammate to wake them up, but I'll end up as the bad guy. You have to get used to it and adapt to the way of being. 

Do you not with your experience the team demands you to be more of a captain than in the shadow? 

You have to understand that no one wants to be the bad guy. It's difficult to explain to teammates that if I am speaking to them, it's for their own good. I want to transmit that 'I am speaking to you because you're important for the team and if you wake up, we all wake up.' But it is difficult. As for attitude, you try to be contagious on the pitch. Run back to defence, press... In that sense, the team should realise that if Leo, Luis, Antoine and Ousmane are running, why can't everyone else run? Come on! But sometimes it's difficult. 

You want to lead by example then.

I struggle with the issue of saying things to teammates because they can misinterpret the message that you really want to give them. 

How do you feel about the way of playing the game in respect to your arrival here? 

I always say that Barça have improved me a lot as a player, in terms of discipline, tactics, being more intelligent, moving in the space I need to move in, but I've also lost things. At Liverpool and and with Uruguay, they sent me long balls, I would fight with the defence for them... things that now I cannot use. 

How do you feel after recent injuries?

I've been injured twice this season. I cleared it all up while with Uruguay because a lot was said. I knew how long I was going to be out for more or less (the second time) because I spoke with the doctors. (The media) said that I was going to have an injection to play against Celta and go with the national team... neither Uruguay nor Barça would allow that. It wasn't necessary for two friendlies. You have to get used to it at the end of the day and time will heal everything. 

A lot was said about your knee injury before the Copa del Rey final as well.

I tried to clear that up at the time because it hurt to lose the final and for me to be blamed. They said we lost the Copa because we didn't have a No.9, that Suarez hadn't played... and that hurt me. If I ask you, someone who writes for a living and has a broken bone in the hand and the doctor tells you you have this injury, can you write? No, it's difficult. I had a torn meniscus. How can I go against the doctor? It is impossible. They invent things. The injury I had at the start of last season was a cartilage problem, it was nothing to do with the meniscus. 

The meniscus injury happened at Anfield?

Yes. There were 10, 15 minutes to go. With the adrenaline, I kept going. I didn't feel much pain. After, in the dressing room, I felt it, put ice on... but I am not going to keep clearing things up. 

Do you feel loved and respected by the fans?

A lot. A lot. 

How many years can you keep playing? You have a contract until 2021. 

Until 2021 with an option until 2022. I feel happy, really happy here. I feel that the club value me a lot, even though sometimes things are misinterpreted. They value the effort I make all the time, that I give everything for the club. I am part of the best team in the world, the team I always wanted to play for. My family is happy and I hope to be in Barcelona for more time. 

So you see yourself here for many more years?

I'm still motivated and capable to fight for a place at Barcelona. 

You're the third top goalscorer in the club's history. Are you a legend?

I think the numbers speak for themselves. I've had some complicated moments and this praise or statistics like this make you feel very proud. Whether you want it or not, if you like it or not, I will remain in the club's history as one of the top scorers. 

With your new Puma Futue Flash boots, do you hope to break your goal drought away from home in the Champions League? Does it worry you?

I would be really grateful to Puma for the rest of my life if I manage it (laughs). I'm not worried, but you feel the need to say 'finally I want to score,' but if another teammate had scored at Anfield and we'd have got through, I would have been really happy, beyond the goal I wanted to score. in reality, strikers live with these stats ... I have time to overcome it and to keep playing in the same way, contributing to goals. 

What are the team's sensations this season?

The bar at Barcelona will always be really high. These days, if you don't aspire to win the treble, it's a bad year. At Barcelona, 10 or 12 years ago, winning the league was something spectacular. The bar has now been set by the players in recent years and by us here now. We're aware that we start every season with the possibility of winning the treble, but it's not easy at all. Last year everything was thrown out of the window because we only won La Liga because of one defeat at Liverpool. If we beat Liverpool, I am sure we win the Copa del Rey and have a chance in the Champions League final. This year, the ambition and the sensations are the same. We want to win everything. Barcelona demands that from you, especially with these players. 

A curiosity: Pique said you would have been willing to help finance the Neymar deal. Was that the case? 

Sometimes you have to take what Geri says with a pinch of salt," Suarez said. "He has the gift of the gab and a lot of experience in making comments. In this case, he knows and is completely aware that the players were completely removed from the Ney case. We were ready to welcome him -- him or any other player that wants to come -- but always distanced from what was going on.

How is Griezmann's adaption? 

spectacular. Sometimes things are poorly interpreted. Both Leo (Messi) and I, as well as Geri, welcomed him last year, saying that he was a great player and one of the best in the world. He then became world champion and we lauded him for the class of player he is. After that, we didn't know what would happen with him, we weren't certain that he would come this year. We treat him like anyone else. It's also true some teammates have more of an affinity with others, in his case he gets on really well with the other French players. With us, sometimes we have a mate, that doesn't mean you get on better or worse. He gets on really well with everyone and is well integrated, as we expected him to be."

When you retire, could you live in Barcelona?

Maybe we will live in Barcelona, the family is really happy here. We love it here.




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