Luis Suarez
Luis Suarez
Photo: Twitter/ FutbolBible

Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez moved to Atletico Madrid from FC Barcelona last month. Now, the 33-year-old striker has revealed that his former club treated him so badly that he spent days in tears prior to his departure to Atletico Madrid.

In another sign he can still deliver to his teams, Suárez scored Uruguay's first goal from the spot in the 2-1 home victory against Chile in the opening round of the South American World Cup qualifiers on Thursday. The 33-year-old also scored two goals in his debut for his new club in Spain on Sept. 27.

The striker said his strong start at Atlético eases the pain he felt from leaving Barca, where he was on a team that won 13 titles since arriving in 2014 from Liverpool, including four Spanish league trophies and the Champions League in 2015. He is the club's third all-time leading scorer with 98 goals.

"I didn't take it very well because of the way they (Barcelona) did it, more than anything. One has to accept when his cycle is over," Suárez told Uruguay soccer association television after the victory against Chile in Montevideo.

"It was days I spent crying because of the situation I was living. Then (I went back) to enjoying myself, once again be valued as a player, be loved, feel the care of a club that welcomed me marvelously," he added.

Atlético will pay Barcelona up to 6 million euros ($7 million) in fees for Suárez, who signed a two-year deal with the club.

Suárez was informed of Barcelona's decision to get rid of him through a call from new coach Ronald Koeman, hired after the team was thrashed 8-2 by Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals. The Dutchman denied he was solely responsible for the Uruguayan's departure.

Hard-hit financially by the coronavirus pandemic, Barca also needed to reduce its expenditure.

"There are things that are not known," Suárez said.

"But to go to Barcelona and be sent to train separately because you don't belong among the 22 players... My wife was the one that saw me upset, with my head down."

Suárez denied he refused an offer from Juventus to remain in Spain, as his family wished.

"They just wanted to see me happy," he said.

Suarez said he was not surprised by the public defense of him made by Lionel Messi, who attacked Barca's management for its treatment to the Uruguayan. On September 25, Messi posted a photo of himself with Suarez on Instagram.

"It is going to be so strange seeing you in another shirt, and even stranger to have to play against you," Messi wrote.

View this post on Instagram

Ya me venía haciendo la idea pero hoy entré al vestuario y me cayó la ficha de verdad. Que difícil va a ser no seguir compartiendo el día a día con vos, tanto en las canchas como afuera. Los vamos a extrañar muchísimo. Fueron muchos años, muchos mates, comidas, cenas... Muchas cosas que nunca se van a olvidar, todos los días juntos. Va a ser raro verte con otra camiseta y mucho más enfrentarte. Te merecías que te despidan como lo que sos: uno de los jugadores más importantes de la historia del club, consiguiendo cosas importantes tanto en lo grupal como individualmente. Y no que te echen como lo hicieron. Pero la verdad que a esta altura ya no me sorprende nada. Te deseo todo lo mejor en este nuevo desafío. Te quiero mucho, los quiero mucho. Hasta pronto, amigo.

A post shared by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on

"You deserved a sending-off fit for what you are: one of the most important players in club history, both for what you did for the group and individually - not the one they gave you. But it is true that at this point nothing surprises me."

Barcelona is experiencing a political crisis that could end with the removal of president Josep Maria Bartomeu, seen by many analysts as the main targets of Messi and Suárez in their criticism of the club's management.

(To download our E-paper please click here. The publishers permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal

www.freepressjournal.in