Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has claimed that Luis Suarez is worth as much as Tottenham forward Gareth Bale, as he reiterated his belief that the striker will not be leaving Anfield this summer.
Spurs are reported to be currently discussing a deal with Real Madrid that could see Bale move to Spain for more than £100 million.
And Rodgers has suggested Suarez has been under-valued in comparison after Premier League rivals Arsenal had a £40 million and £1 bid for the Uruguay international rejected last month.
“Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez were arguably the two best players in the Premier League last season and you can’t say Gareth Bale is valued at more than 100% more than Luis Suarez,” Rodgers told reporters after Steven Gerrard’s testimonial on Saturday.
“Of course, every player will have a value but you only have to look at the market and £40million and £1 for Suarez. Then Gareth Bale, they are talking about nine figures.
“Of all the speculation and all the clubs he was supposed to be going to, we’ve had two bids from one club and that was nowhere near the valuation in the market for a top player.
“I was on the phone last night quite a bit with the owners and they know what we are trying to do. We are trying to build a group up and we are in no hurry to sell Luis or any other player. We are very strong in the belief in what we are doing and there will be no-one moving out of here.”
Suarez was given a surprisingly rapturous reception by the Liverpool fans as he made a second half appearance in the 2-0 testimonial defeat of Olympiakos.
And Rodgers believes the adoration that still exists for Suarez reflects well on the club’s supporters.
“It is not quite the reception you guys [in the media] thought he’d get,” Rodgers said. “It just shows you the class of the Liverpool supporters. There has been a lot of speculation about Luis and what sort of reception he would get, but they love their own and Luis is still very much part of the team.
“He can’t start the season because he is suspended, but they have given him everything and, even when they may have had an excuse [not to], they backed him to the hilt and it was great for them to do that.
“He was probably humbled by it. There may have been some trepidation in terms of the reaction he would get, but people who have been at this club much longer than me and know the Liverpool way is to always respect their own.
“Luis is still very much a part of what we are doing and that was another message from them that they love him. We only want players who are totally 100% committed to being here and I’ve spoken to Luis countless times over the summer.”
Rodgers feels that the support the Liverpool fans have shown for Suarez can only help the club in their bid to keep hold of the striker.
“Speculation can be difficult for players. There are a lot of stories that have gone on around Luis but there is no change in him. He is working well and he got a great reception here today,” he said.
“The more he is around the group and the great support here, in addition to days like today, he will understand. If ever anyone wanted to know the status of Liverpool it was while we were on tour and days like today.
“It is a truly remarkable club and you don’t want to leave one of the biggest clubs in the world in a hurry and I think he knows that.”