Yet again, Luis Suarez has hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons. After an incredible season for Liverpool and two goals for Uruguay at the World Cup, things could not seem to get any better for him, but they certainly could and have got a lot worse.
On Thursday, FIFA found Suarez guilty of biting Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder during their Group D clash, and subsequently issued a four-month ban from all forms of football and nine international matches. FIFA had to show a strong punishment and that behaviour like this will not be tolerated.
This obviously means that Suarez's World Cup is over, and so is Uruguay's after they were comfortably beaten 2-0 by Colombia in their last 16 clash on Saturday night. But, the real losers in this situation has to be Liverpool, as he will miss the first nine league games of next season as well as any Champions League and Capital One cup games during that time.
Liverpool have stuck by their star man during several high profile disciplinary issues. Once for racially abusing Patrice Evra and once for biting Branislav Ivanovic, resulting in a combined ban of 18 games for which Liverpool stood by him and welcomed him back.
Last season he obviously repaid that faith, with an outstanding set of performances that earned him the Player of the Year and Football Writers' Player of the Year awards, he helped Liverpool to second place in the league and Champions League qualification.
However, he has now put his club in another very uncomfortable position of having to decide whether to stand by him, or publicly condemn a man who is by far their best player.
Few can argue that without Suarez, Liverpool would not have been competing for the title last season, and the thought of losing a true world class player will leave a bitter taste in the mouth. But, they have to draw the line somewhere as currently they are being punished because of his stupid behaviour.
To miss nine league games is the first quarter of the season and, when you are hoping to compete for the title, your form for the first ten games or so is crucial. In the Premier League you can find yourself out of the title race very quickly and, if they hope to be in the mix, Liverpool need to carry on the momentum from last season.
That will be very hard to do when your top scorer is unavailable and suddenly the scoring emphasis will fall mainly on Daniel Sturridge. So should Liverpool cut their losses, sell him to the highest bidder and find a replacement? How do you replace arguably the third best player in the world?
Despite the ban, there would still be bidders for the Uruguayan if he was to be made available, with Spain the most likely destination. They could still receive a huge sum of money which could then be put back into the squad to fill the massive void he would leave.
However, even with his disciplinary issues he is regarded as one of the most gifted players on the planet and there will be certain sections of the fans that would not appreciate selling such an asset.
Liverpool find themselves in another difficult situation, being punished for the actions of one player, and damage limitation will have to be put in place. Whatever they choose to do, the whole world will be watching.
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