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Aston Villa Favourites To Be Luis Suarez’s Next Destination

Greg Lea for Bookies.com

Greg Lea  | 5 mins

Aston Villa Favourites To Be Luis Suarez’s Next Destination

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Luis Suarez is coming towards the end of what has been a glittering career.

With his contract at Atletico Madrid set to expire this summer, it is highly probable that the Uruguay international will be plying his trade elsewhere next season.

We have browsed various football betting sites to assess where Suarez might end up. The four most likely destinations are considered below.

A Reunion With Steven Gerrard At Aston Villa?

Aston Villa are given a 4/1 chance of signing Suarez before the January transfer window closes on Monday. Such a move might seem unlikely at first glance, but there are a few things to consider here.

First, Atletico will not receive a transfer fee if Suarez leaves when his contract expires. The bean-counters at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano might therefore prefer to cash in now, particularly if a younger replacement can be acquired before the deadline.

Diego Simeone’s side are out of the La Liga title race, which increases the chances of the club seriously considering any offers that arrive in the next few days.

Steven Gerrard has already used his status as a Liverpool legend to good effect this month. If Gerrard was not the Aston Viilla manager, Philippe Coutinho would almost certainly have moved elsewhere. The Brazilian’s loan switch to Villa Park came about because he already has a relationship with Gerrard, who might attempt to repeat the trick with Suarez.

It is worth noting that Gerrard played down the links last week. He told reporters that Villa are not looking to add a centre-forward to their squad this month, although he would not be the first manager to deny a transfer rumour in public while working on a deal in private.

Even so, a January transfer is probably a longer shot than 4/1 odds suggest. Yet Villa are an ambitious club and they could renew their interest in Suarez in the summer to improve their odds in the Premier League betting markets next term. Do not rule out the striker reuniting with Gerrard, even if it does not happen before the January deadline.

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Is There Unfinished Business For Luis Suarez At Liverpool?

None of the best betting apps believe Suarez is likely to return to Liverpool. Odds of 33/1 are the best you can get on the Uruguayan pitching up at Anfield before the window slams shut on Monday.

Suarez was a phenomenal player for The Reds. He had one of the greatest individual seasons of any Liverpool player in history in 2013/14, with his 31 goals and 12 assists almost carrying Brendan Rodgers’ side to the Premeir League title. Suarez was unplayable that campaign and it was no surprise to see Barcelona spend big to sign him the following summer.

Suarez is now 35 years old, the age at which many players would be looking for a comfortable way to wind down their careers. But such is his personality and hunger for the game that it is possible to imagine Suarez eyeing one more stint at a major European club.

He may feel he has unfinished business at Anfield after that near-miss in 2013/14, when Suarez was seen crying on the Crystal Palace pitch after the 3-3 draw that in effect ended Liverpool’s title hopes.

The chance to have another crack at the Premier League – and the Champions League, which he has only won once – would no doubt appeal to the striker.

Liverpool might not feel the same, however. Under the ownership of the Fenway Sports Group they have tended to target younger players with their peak years ahead of them. Suarez does not fit that model, and there are also doubts over whether he still has the legs to press from the front the way Jurgen Klopp demands.

A Long-Awaited Move To Juventus May Be An Option

Suarez came close to joining Juventus when he left Barcelona in 2019. The move hinged on the striker taking up Italian citizenship (he is married to an Italian citizen) and then collapsed after Suarez was accused of cheating on a compulsory language exam. Atletico Madrid were the beneficiaries and Juventus had to look elsewhere or a new centre-forward.

The Italian giants could go back in for Suarez this summer. Gaining citizenship might not be necessary this time; it was only a requirement two years ago because Juventus had already filled their quota of non-EU players.

Suarez was clearly attracted to the club the last time he was looking for new employers. If he is seeking a new challenge in a new league but wants to remain in Europe, Juventus would make as much sense as anywhere – provided they qualify for the Champions League, which is by no means a given.

Juventus reportedly approached Suarez this month as they seek a replacement for Alvaro Morata, but the Uruguay international is said to have turned them down as he would prefer to finish the season with Atletico.

That does not necessarily rule out a move in the summer, even if it is only a one-year deal.

Could The MLS Be Calling For Player Nearing End Of Career?

For all that Suarez is not one for the easy life, he might conclude that the time has come to bid farewell to Europe.

A return to his first club Nacional would be the romantic choice, but the Uruguayan side would struggle to meet Suarez’s wage demands. Perhaps a bigger club from Brazil or Argentina would offer him the chance to return to South America, but a move further north is more probable.

Suarez gave an interview to Club Del Deportista last year in which he revealed he would like to play in the United States. His former international team-mate Nicolas Lodeiro, who has played for Seattle Sounders in 2016, has claimed it is “only a matter of time” before Suarez joins him in Major League Soccer.

Inter Miami, the club part-owned by David Beckham, tried to tempt the striker across the Atlantic in 2020. They could go back in for the 35-year-old this summer, but they are sure to face competition from some of their MLS rivals.

About the Author

A London-based soccer specialist, Greg Lea has been featured in The Guardian and ESPN for his coverage of the Premier League, Champions League and World Cup.