Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted that only time will tell if controversial Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez has learnt his lesson from a string of high profile misdemeanours.
Five months and 10 games after his suspension for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic, Suarez is set to make his return in the League Cup clash against fierce rivals Manchester United on Wednesday evening.
Rodgers told reporters that he has no doubts about thrusting the 26-year-old back into first-team football. The Irishman also added that it is a great game for Suarez to play on his return from the 10 game exile from the Premier league.
“No. I have got no hesitation. There has never been an issue with anything like that," the former Swansea City manager is quoted by Goal.com.
"There is the history of the clash but it won’t enter my mind. He is a tough character. He is resilient and one of the strongest-willed characters I have ever met in my life."
The 40-year-old manager continued: “We are just delighted to have him back. I know the players are happy we are bringing someone back like that of that quality.
"When Luis knew he would be available for the fixture, it would have really stoked him up to make sure he was even more ready."
Suarez has been in the main character in a series of controversies, and although his talent is undeniable, so is his temperament.
The Liverpool boss has revealed that it will take time for the fiery striker to show if he has curbed his bad behaviour on the pitch.
“I think that test will come over time,” said Rodgers. “It won’t be a one-off game. I think over time, we will see the lessons learned and that maturity.
"I don’t think he will be targeted any more than he has been before. Luis is that type of player. He will always provoke the tackle or the challenge."
The return of Suarez is a great boost for the Reds ahead of the trip to Old Trafford, and Rodgers said the South American forward can't wait to get back on the pitch.
"The work that he does in and around the box will always make defenders be on the back foot. It is part of the game and whatever part of the field you play, you have to put up with that.
“He will just be happy to pull on the shirt for real. It doesn’t matter where that would be, whether it was Old Trafford or another stadium. I think he can’t wait to get out there.”
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