I am writing this article because I find that certain Liverpool FC supporters are still perplexed about what motivates Luis Suarez to do some of the things he does. For a few years, I have seen fans and media pundits try to offer their own interpretation on traits that are otherwise very recognizable to Uruguayan/South American football fans. You might be surprised to know that much of what influences his behaviour has to do with the football culture he was raised in, instead of it strictly being a product of his poor upbringing as certain pundits have guessed.

So, to all Liverpool FC supporters, welcome to our site. Enjoy: 3 key things you that you probably did not know about Luis Suarez. Explained:

#3. “Why does Luis Suarez celebrate and play like a fan?  Does he really care for the clubs he plays for?”

Answer:  Luis Suarez grew up in a culture that highly cherishes tradition and history in football.
Ask a Wigan supporter about their 1998 season, and they would surely laugh because it was “15 years ago! Who cares?”. However, a Liverpool FC supporter would become giddy at the prospect of talking about Liverpool’s 1964 league winning year. They are very different football cultures. The exact same dynamic exists in the Americas, especially regarding Uruguay/Argentina/Brazil vs. the rest of the continent. There is a certain adoration and regard for football history that the rest simply don’t find relevant.

Liverpool FC players and supporters are famous for the devotion they show in honouring their iconic club history.
“What was before, we see once more. Is our kingdom, a distant light”. Both football cultures (LFC and Uruguay) share a relentless need to return to the glory days and re-create the mythical feats of old.

The way Luis Suarez “feels” the game is different than how, say, Zlatan Ibrahimovic feels it. There is a popular South American saying that states: “Countries have their history. Uruguay has its football”. To Luis Suarez, completing a comeback win or scoring a dramatic goal is like re-creating the mythical feats and legends that he (and every Sky Blue player) grew up on and value to this day. For others it may seem weird to see a player care so much, but to me seeing Luis Suarez play like he does is very normal. Football is highly romanticized in the minds of these players and the result means more than a mere 3 points. While this is normal in South America, Luis Suarez has continued this tradition in Europe and formed strong bonds where he has played. It’s not surprising that Ajax supporters offered Luis Suarez an unprecedented farewell at the Amsterdam Arena, merely days after he had signed for Liverpool.

An emotional farewell: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzAQd2NGxmg

#2. “Why does Luis Suarez go down easily at times? Why does he often over-dramatize a foul?”

Answer: In South America, doing this is necessary in order to survive as a forward.
This is probably the most common question I’ve read asked by certain media pundits, and it’s understandable. South America has a very different view on what is acceptable or not on the pitch. In South America, defenders are extremely crafty, subtle and can foul you three times in a play without the referee noticing. Most of the time, the only way to be given a foul (well within the rules of the game) is so over-dramatize the foul. You will likely see Carlos Tevez and Sergio Aguero react in the exact same way. Take two weeks ago, when Jonas Olsson (West Brom defender) fouled Luis Suarez for a penalty. I switched over to the English announcers, and they were contemplating whether it was a dive or not. I switched over to the announcers from Spain, and they were applauding Luis Suarez for “finding the foul” (and it was a clear foul). This is a massive difference in interpretation. What Olsson did (and had been doing all game) was nudging and clipping Luis in a subtle way that would throw him off as the ball was arriving to him. What is often misinterpreted as “trying to con the ref” is usually Luis trying to highlight the subtle contact that the defender was trying to get away with. It is just the way he grew up doing things. As a child, it was re-inforced by family, friends, managers and the media that this is the correct thing to do.

#1. “Why is Luis Suarez so darn combative? Why does he never give up?”

Answer: The Garra Charrua
To someone like Luis Suarez, this concept is at the centre of everything he stands for as a football player. Just how “You’ll Never Walk Alone” has become synonymous with Liverpool FC, the concept of “Garra Charrua” has become synonymous with Uruguayan football for over 120 years. What is the “Garra Charrua”? The dictionary definition is: winning despite mountainous expectations of the contrary.  However, this concept, and what Luis Suarez represents on the pitch, is very different from the conventional ideas of “never giving up” or “trying very hard”. It is a romantic belief (or duty) to winning, supported by a century worth of  fables about near impossible football feats. Each of these fables have been passed down generation after generation…from grandfather to father…father to son…and son to grandson.

You must understand that Uruguay is a very small nation of 3 million people (half of Scotland). To its fans worldwide, as well as players and people of this country, there is something magical about this history and they feel strongly responsible (and anxious) with protecting it. However, the players must over-compensate for the country’s lack of population (and talent compared to Argentina and Brazil) with a surplus of effort and belief. Thus, this “warrior spirit” (Garra Charrua) is at the focal point of everything they grow up around, and it must be displayed even when playing for foreign clubs. Luis Suarez grew up valuing “leaving your soul on the pitch” more than just playing well because it is an integral (and renowned) aspect of his country’s football identity.
Suggestion to LFC Supporters: If you ever make a flag that says “Garra Charrua” (typically done on a light blue surface, written in black), it would actually mean the world to Luis Suarez.

“Red and Sky Blue”- Thank you to the unnamed artist who created this.

I hope this article clarifies a few things for Liverpool FC supporters. I decided to write this after visiting their beautiful city this summer and speaking to many of their supporters. So, the next time you watch Luis Suarez play, maybe his actions will make more sense to you.

Thanks for visiting!

Written by: Foxfang4 (@Foxfang4)

MaroonFox4 MaroonFox4 13 like

42 Responses so far.

  1. NonEventHorizon says:

    Brilliant article, well done to the author. I’m a die-hard LFC fan and feel I know our talisman and Uruguayan football better for reading this. Uruguay YNWA with Liverpool fans 🙂

    I’m also a regular reader of a “critical analysis” LFC blog where the author is overly critical of Suarez in my opinion, probably due to his lack of understanding of the cultural differences you highlight. I would love to see your interpretations of some of the Suarez articles on that site as I think you’d bring a side to the debate that is being missed at the moment (liverpool-kop dot com).

    I love the Garra Charrua flag idea!


    Current score: 0
  2. NicoGF NicoGF says:

    se les puede ganar a todos pero hay que tener en cuenta probabilidades, calidad del rival, momento futbolistico del rival y el nuestro, condiciones climaticas, localia, etc.. considerando todo eso y siendo lo mas objetivo posible: paraguay, chile, venezuela, peru, colombia, ecuador, argentina). paraguay, chile, peru son ganables. venezuela va a estar dificil, tienen una muy solida defensa y estan con con hambre (dos centrales de dos metros, y rondon que siempre mete goles de cabeza). colombia y ecuador nos van a complicar muchisimo. y argentina probablemente sea derrota o empate. hace los calculos jajaj. con el que no estoy seguro es con chile. (nicogf). paraguay (ganamos), chile (empate), venezuela (empate), peru (ganamos), colombia (perdemos), ecuador (empate o ganamos), arg (perdemos). va a ser muy importante lo que hagamos al comienzo de estos partidos, pq al final se pone mas duro, con rivales dificiles. asi que hariamos entre 9 y 11 puntos. decis que da???

    Current score: 3
  3. Recobenzo says:

    Someone please explain to me how this stuff works.

    Castro is out beacuse of injury, like I previously assumed from the last 2 weeks…but today he was on the bench as the ONLY Striker off it…..with 3 on. This despite the fact they have Ifran. Yet he is out with unjury.

    Caceres is still out…not even on the bench but is he expected to be fit in another week? Rolin is available……he has played OK. He is at least Not injured.

    What I am missing here?

    Current score: 4
  4. NicoGF NicoGF says:

    i know it’s old by that time even abreu was scoring goals xddd. but okay maestro doesnt call-him up, this is the last proof of him playing for la celeste. tabarez is very mad at nacho for just some bad minutes vs france.. (in which he managed to assist forlan once).

    Current score: 1
    • Farerets Farerets says:

      No manager would ever reject a player only for “some bad minutes” in a game, that his team didn’t even lose.

      Ignacio González is undoubtabely a wonderful person and a decent football player – but NOT a material for a team, that expect to win international tournaments. His move to Spanish Second division bottom club proves just that.

      Current score: 1
    • NicoGF NicoGF says:

      we can agree to disagree on that 🙂

      Current score: 2
    • Farerets Farerets says:

      I am afraid that all the other participants in this Blog agree with me, just because that even though many of us are fanatical supporters of La Celeste, we tend to be objective regarding the team’s selection, as we wish La Celeste all the very best! 🙂

      Current score: 1
    • NicoGF NicoGF says:

      i disapprove what you say, but i’ll defend to death your right to say it. (voltaire).

      Current score: 3
    • Dutchfan dutchfan says:

      “if u are gonna follow nacho gonzalez, count me in i’ll be ur first fan” was your reaction when Celeste24283050 opened a site. When Fox wrote a marvellous article about Luis, your reaction was: “NACHO JUST SCORED VS. REAL MADRID B”

      I don’t think this is appropiate. I appreciate all the effort you put in LCB, but, please, keep your private hobbies private. Of course, the enchantment of LCB is that it sometimes strays off in all directions, but it’s all a matter of: HOW MUCH. The complete emphasis in this blog on Nacho is not in proportion to his significance.

      Current score: 2
    • NicoGF NicoGF says:

      guess we all have the right to comment, and it is not a general rule that we should all follow and love the same players (forlan, suarez, cavani). in my case i like nacho gonzalez, i understand football that way, and im sorry if that doesnt go with the way you see football. wait 6 years and he will retire, maybe then i’ll stop it? 🙂

      the good thing is, im not the main character of the blog, just a crazy guy with ideas.. think of me like that, so dont expect too much from me. i regret to disappoint you bro.

      guess if you dislike my stuff, quickest solution is to stop reading it. you have lots of comments from other people to enjoy. life’s good.

      Current score: 3
    • Dutchfan dutchfan says:

      You don’t disappoint me, Nic, I wouldn’t say so.
      Of course you have the right to say what you want.
      How far you want to exercise that right, you can only decide yourself.
      And yes, life’s good. Let’s keep that in mind.

      Current score: 2
  5. NicoGF NicoGF says:

    celeste24283050 but you watched the match nacho vs real madrid b? if u did, surely he showed more than a lot enganche skills. as he always does.. your argument may be, okay he’s in second division, come on, he did it wearing la celeste too. he didnt forget how to play this sport. watch the 2 times he touched the ball, smart & magic things happened:

    another argument might be, okay it was israel… you guys cant cover the sun with your thumb, come on, he also did it vs brazil (twice), and in the 6-0 vs peru.. vs japan, vs israel, vs norway, vs turkey, etc. search for those games..

    Current score: 0
  6. Farerets Farerets says:

    We can state that this entry by Foxfang4 made waives all around… 198 facebook likes, not bad at all 🙂 plus many new visitors of our wonderful blog 😉

    Current score: 3
    • Yorugua Yorugua says:

      I just hope one out of those 198 Facebook users bothered to click the Party Poker or 888 banner at least once!

      Gambling websites keeping LCB up.

      So lets make sure everone clicks on these sites from time to time… it’s the neighborly thing to do!

      Current score: 3
    • NicoGF NicoGF says:

      the real thing happens during the eliminatorias. i love it when everybody remembers LCB and comes to comment, be it to celebrate or to critisize 😉 but i love to discuss about la celeste. btw celeste24283050, you really watched nacho vs real madrid b? he really showed the makings of an out-and-out enganche, and also scored. dont u think he could come in handy for any second half in la celeste? i have a great formation 4-1-2-3



      so we have many creative players: nacho, lodeiro, ramirez, even cavani and suarez are a bit too. a taller five who can run and pass the ball… thats it. welcome football. those strikers could switch flaks any tiem, and the enganche rol can at times be occupied by nacho, ramirez, or even suarez and times. lodeiro can create and advance, but he will have to defend too, just like he did vs spain. well, all should defend. just like spain. but with PRESSURE… uruguay just sits back.. and lets touch the ball correctly, with strenght, precission and determination. AUTHORITY

      Current score: 6
    • yayob91 says:

      Nico, Nothing against nacho, I think he is a great player, but I just dont see Tabarez calling him up anytime soon. So working with what we have, this is a more realistic approach.



      Caceres likes to move forward giving cebolla more freedom to move inside and be creative. I would like to see ramirez play a more central role with lodeiro drifting wide to open up space and distribute the ball to suarez. Just like you said, offensive roles could be interchangeable, without compromising our defense of course 🙂 In a perfect world we would have a taller 5 but i think gargano is an exceptional player whos only disadvantage is his height. Other than that I think he deserves that role. Just my say in things and my attempt to spark discussion and conversation!

      foxfang, GREAT article by the way, one of my favorites. I enjoyed reading every sentence!

      Current score: 4
    • celeste24283050 says:

      i just can’t see nacho being in the starting 11
      but i wouldn’t mind seeing him in the squad. he can bring more to the table then eguren or alvaro fernandez cant understand why he ‘s called up. for me theres a lot of question marks about mono pereria he’s not getting that much playing time for benfica and gargano has really been poor latley for inter we really need a center midfield i wouldn’t mind giving arismendi a shot perhaps try him out in a friendly? at least perez has been playing good latley for bologna but he is’nt getting any younger.

      Current score: 4
    • Dutchfan dutchfan says:

      I wouldn’t mind clicking on, let me say, Puma shoes/clothes, airlines, cars, Nivea for men or Yarrah petfood. But gambling/poker, no way.

      Current score: 3
  7. Maldoror55 Maldoror55 says:

    Should we cease a fire on him? For how long ?

    Current score: 0
    • Farerets Farerets says:

      Until October (or, at worst case, November 2013) 😉 or… never 🙂

      Current score: 2

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