The Anfield captain described his team-mate as “the best forward he had ever played with”, which helped persuade the then wantaway Uruguayan to remain on Merseyside
Luis Suarez has revealed the “massive part” Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard played in convincing him to stay at Anfield.
The Uruguay international was embroiled in long-running transfer saga in the summer, with Arsenal making several unsuccessful moves to bring him to the Emirates Stadium after the former Ajax man had intimated he was ready for a fresh challenge.
Suarez, though, committed his future to the Merseysiders with a new long-term contract signed in December, and the Premier League’s top scorer credits the faith and support of Gerrard with persuading him to remain at the club.
“[Gerrard] played a massive part in convincing me to stay,” the 27-year-old told FourFourTwo.
“He didn’t talk about me, or through me, in the press, but in person.
“In those moments I forgot that he was ‘world football great Gerrard’, a Liverpool legend, but as a humble person who spoke to me with all his heart for hours.
“He said I was the best forward he’d ever played with, which given the amazing strikers that he’s played with at Liverpool, was amazing for me to hear. I’ll never forget that.”
Since renewing his deal with the Reds, Suarez has taken his league goal tally to 23 for the season and was even handed the captain’s armband recently – an honour he greatly appreciated.
“It was weird – strange,” he added. “I’d never imagined myself as Liverpool skipper. After everything that had happened with me, to retain the support of the club, the coach and my team-mates showed me they were happy to forget and forgive.
“It proved that my commitment to the club and to my team-mates is genuine and that I’m giving the maximum.
“Everyone here lives to help the club. Being Liverpool captain is something that validates you and makes you feel appreciated because there have been some fantastic leaders here.”