Arsenal will take any hope they can get ahead of Tuesday's Champions League tie against Barcelona. The Catalan club go into the two-legged tie as heavy favourites and are widely expected to blow Arsene Wenger's men aside without too much trouble.
The Gunners, however, were given a tiny glimmer of hope when Luis Suarez, the deadliest of the revered 'MSN' attacking trio, turned up at Barcelona airport without his passport. The Uruguayan, who has 41 goals in 37 matches this season, looked less than relaxed when he stepped off the team bus (Click here for a video).
According to the Independent, the striker quickly informed a Barcelona official of the mishap and a whipping boy was quickly sent to retrieve it. Suarez boarded the plane without a hitch and all hope of Arsenal getting a huge boost was gone.
Arsenal must now face the full force of the Leo Messi, Neymar and Suarez combination. Together, they have scored an incredible 91 goals. Suarez (41) leads the trident while Messi (27) and Neymar (21) are not doing too bad a job.
To put that record in context, the entire Arsenal team have scored 61 goals this season. Yep. That is context.
Of course, in an alternate universe, Suarez would not have needed his passport to take part in Tuesday's game because he would have been playing at home. The former Liverpool star was once the subject of Arsene Wenger's desire and if it was not for a stubborn Brendan Rodgers, he would have joined Arsenal in 2013.
The Gunners infamously bid £40million plus £1 in the knowledge that it would trigger a release clause. That information proved to be fake and the move collapsed. Wenger, who will see what he missed out on first hand, says he used to think about what might have been quite a lot.
“Not now”, he said when asked if he regretted not getting Suarez. “It happened to me before but not now.”
But if Arsenal had signed Suarez, it is unlikely they would have ever brought Alexis Sanchez to the club a year later. The Chilean was sold by Barcelona to make way for Suarez and he has since flourished at the Emirates. However, he did not have his best game against Hull City, emerging from the bench but proving ineffectual.
Wenger said of Sanchez: “I don’t think he was completely ready to come on [against Hull] but he grows with the game. He has a game based on risk and so when he’s not completely, completely highly tuned in it becomes dangerous. Don’t worry about Tuesday; he’ll be tuned in.”