Why does Luis Suarez bite? The question that has plagued soccer fans for years. Since Suarez began his career in Europe with Groningen in Holland, there have been three biting incidents involving the Barcelona striker. The first occurred while he played for Ajax Amsterdam in a game against PSV Eindhoven. Suarez bit midfielder Otman Bakkal. The others were against Branislav Ivanovic while Suarez was playing for Liverpool against Chelsea in 2013. The other was against Giorgio Chiellini during the World Cup in Brazil in 2014 while Uruguay played Italy. For the Chiellini received a four-month ban from soccer worldwide. The Juventus defender later said that he forgave Suarez and that he felt sorry the ban the former Liverpool striker was given.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Suarez Said He Cried When His Wife Asked Him Why He Bit an Opponent
In an extract of his book, Crossing the Line, that was published in 2014 and extracted in the Guardian, Suarez spoke at length about the first biting incident. Suarez said that his daughter, Delfina, had just been born and that he worried about her someday seeing the footage. The Barcelona striker said that he cried when his wife asked him why had done it.
Suarez attempted to justify the action by saying:
The adrenaline levels in a game can be so high; the pulse is racing and sometimes the brain doesn’t keep up. The pressure mounts and there is no release valve. In 2010, I was frustrated because we were drawing what was a very important game, and we were on a bad run.
I wanted to do everything right that day, and it felt as though I was doing everything wrong. The pent-up frustration and feeling that it was my fault reached a point where I couldn’t contain it anymore.
2. Suarez Blamed His Chiellini Bite on Missing a Chance Moments Before
Suarez went on to discuss his two other biting incidents in his book, he said:
With Ivanovic in 2013, we had to beat Chelsea still to have any chance of making it into the Champions League. I was having a terrible game. I gave away a stupid penalty with a handball and I could feel everything slipping through our fingers. I could feel myself getting wound up.
Moments before the Chiellini bite, I had a great chance to put us 1-0 up. If I had scored that goal, if Buffon hadn’t made the save, then I would not have done anything. But I missed the chance.
3. Suarez Received No Punishment for Punching an Opponent in 2013
Suarez went on to say that after he punched a Chilean player in 2013, he received no punishment. In 2013 after the Ivanovic bite, Suarez says that he heard the then-Chelsea defender received a visit from the police who asked him if he wanted to press charges.
4. One Sports Psychologist Thinks that Suarez’s Bites are the Result of Him Trying to Control His Emotions
Boston University sports psychologist Adam Naylor gave his opinion on Suarez’s biting to The Cut. Naylor said, “When the ball is in play, emotions drive athlete behavior much more than rational thought. Intense emotions can lead to incredible performances, but they can also lead to total boneheadedness. Frustration, in particular, is known to lead to aggression.” Naylor continues, “Ironically, the more we try to control our impulses under stress, the tougher it gets. So my initial thought is something this odd actually could be a result of his increased efforts at emotional control.”
English sports psychologist, Thomas Fawcett, of the University of Salford, gave his opinion on Suarez to the BBC. Fawcett said, “It’s not pre-planned- it’s a very spontaneous, emotional response. He’s doing it on impulse.
5. Sports Other Famous Biter Said in 1999 that He Would ‘Do it Again’
Arguably, the most famous other biter in world sports was convicted rapist Mike Tyson. In 1997, Tyson bit his opponent, Evander Holyfield’s, ear. Tyson showed none of Suarez’s remorse saying in 1999, “I’d do it again.” Staying in the world of soccer, in 2001, Sevilla midfielder Francisco Gallardo was suspended and fined after he bit teammate Jose Antonio Reyes in the genitals in a moment of celebration after Reyes scored.
Source: Heavy Sports