Kolo Toure is hopeful Liverpool’s title challenge will help convince Luis Suarez to remain at Anfield.
Suarez has been in exceptional form since returning from his 10-game suspension, scoring 17 goals in 11 Premier League games this season, to help Liverpool to second place in the table.
The Uruguayan has already said he is happy at the club but indicated that finishing in the top four could be key to his future, and Reds captain Steven Gerrard warned on Sky Sports after Sunday’s 5-0 victory at Tottenham that the “big guns are going to be sniffing.”
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has suggested this week that he still wants the player, but Toure believes Liverpool are now showing that they can compete at the top of the Premier League.
“Luis is here and we love him because he is a great player,” he is quoted as saying in the Daily Mirror. “Of course we don’t want to lose him to another team. You can see that everyone from this team wants to improve the club and try to win a trophy.
“Luis said he wants to be part of a team that can win a trophy and I think now he can see that all the players want to fight and want to try to win this title definitely.
“We are challenging -- every single game is really important for us and I think we started the game against Tottenham very well, very strong, and we played as a team. We fight, we attack, we defend together and that is very important when you want to challenge for the title.”
Suarez took the captaincy for Sunday’s match and Toure said: “That showed how much the manager respects him and I think he is a leader as well. We have Steven, Lucas, Glen Johnson -– and Suarez is also a leader.
“He is very shy but on the pitch he is a leader. He was talking to his teammates, he scored two goals and fought for the team. He helped people around him, and that’s why he is a great player.”