Liverpool owner John W Henry is adamant that Luis Suarez will not be sold this summer, no matter what offers the club receive.
Suarez is currently being forced to train away from the first-team having gone public with his desire to secure a switch to Premier League rivals Arsenal.
In a hard-hitting interview of his own, Henry laughed off reports suggesting Liverpool would be prepared to do business with Arsene Wenger's side, insisting it would be "ludicrous" to sell to a rival - particularly one that are likely to be competing with Liverpool for a top four finish this season.
"We are not going to sell Luis," Henry told various newspapers. "It's very important [not to sell to a rival], but especially for Liverpool because we're not in Europe this year."
Arsenal have already had two bids rejected by the Reds, the most recent being the well publicised £40,000,001 offer that was submitted in an attempt to activate a release clause in Suarez's contract.
The Uruaguayan international believed this offer would trigger the clause which allows him to speak to a Champions League club who offer in excess of £40 million, but the 26-year-old frontman has so far been unable to speak to the north London club over a potential move.
And Henry is more determined than ever to keep hold of Suarez, who scored an impressive 23 league goals last season.
"He won't be sold even if a foreign club comes in because we do not have time to sign a suitable replacement," he said.
"It's not about finances. So late in the window... we can't replace him. So for football reasons we can't sell, and especially to Arsenal."
Liverpool's American owner did concede that Suarez had the opportunity to leave Anfield at the start of the transfer window, with his agent Pere Guardiola - brother of Bayern Munich manager Pep - told in no uncertain terms that a move had to be wrapped up earlier in the summer to allow Brendan Rodgers sufficient time to find a suitable replacement.
"We made that clear early-on," added Henry. "I think the issue has been resolved now. We have said 'no'. Luis will be a Liverpool player on 3 September [the day after the transfer window closes]."
Rodgers himself has hit out at Suarez for showing "total disrespect" to Liverpool, and despite insisting the controversial striker won't be sold, he stopped short of guaranteeing fans would see Suarez pull on a Liverpool shirt again.
"That's going to be between the manager and player," added Henry.
"The manager is upset, as he should be, the supporters are upset, Luis is, but that's going to be between those two and his team-mates.
"We need Luis. Hopefully this will pass."
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