LIVERPOOL: Liverpool striker Luis Suarez has signed a new long-term contract at Anfield, the Merseyside club announced on Tuesday.
The Uruguayan had been linked with a move away from Liverpool this summer, after an often difficult last season, but he told the club's official website that he was delighted to extend his stay.
“To sign a new contract with Liverpool is unbelievable for me because I am so happy here at both the club and also in the city,” he told Liverpoolfc.com.
“That is important for me and I am very happy with my new contract.
“When you are a kid, everybody wants to play for Liverpool. I am here now and it is a dream for me, and now I am a Liverpool fan.”
The length of the new deal was not disclosed, but new Reds manager Brendan Rodgers admitted his delight that Suarez, who has scored 21 goals in 52 matches for the club, would be staying put for the foreseeable future.
“I'm delighted that he has signed,” he said. “I think he's one of the top strikers in world football.
“Hopefully, he was able to see our vision going forward, in terms of what we're trying to do.”
“When you have the opportunity to work with world-class players it's fantastic.
“There were certainly a few clubs who were interested in him, but over the off-season he and I communicated well and he's committed himself for the long term here now.”
Suarez is back in training at Liverpool following his recent involvement in Uruguay's failed bid for Olympic gold, and will hope to feature in the club's opening Premier League game at West Bromwich Albion on August 18.
It has not all been plain sailing for Suarez at Anfield – his troubles began in October last year after Manchester United defender Patrice Evra made an allegation the 25-year-old had racially abused him during a 1-1 between the sides.
The high-profile incident resulted in the Football Association banning Suarez for eight matches and fining him 40,000 pounds ($63,000).
Fuel was then added to the fire when, on his return to the first team for the clash with United at Old Trafford, Suarez refused to shake Evra's hand prior to scoring in a 2-1 defeat.