MADRID (Reuters) - Barcelona defender Gerard Pique believes an “angry” Luis Suarez will be desperate to prove himself when he has served out a four-month ban for a biting incident at the World Cup.
Uruguay striker Suarez was given a nine-match international suspension and banned from all football-related activity for four months by FIFA after he bit Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup in Brazil last month.
Barca have since lured him from English Premier League side Liverpool and the 27-year-old could make his debut for the Catalan club in the La Liga “Clasico” against Real Madrid at the end of October.
“I expect that he (Suarez), like anybody who has the possibility of doing their work taken away from them, will be feeling rage,” Pique said at a news conference at Barca’s pre-season training camp in England.
“For the time being he has to wait,” added the Spain defender. “When he returns he will be full of desire to show that he is one of the best forwards on the planet.”
Suarez will join Argentina captain Lionel Messi and Brazil forward Neymar in a formidable attack as Barca seek to bounce back from a disappointing 2013-14 season when they failed to win major silverware for the first time in six years.
They have a new coach at the helm in former Barca and Spain midfielder Luis Enrique and begin their La Liga campaign at home to Elche on the weekend of August 23/24.
Reporting by Iain Rogers; editing by Justin Palmer