Why Barcelona Could Trump Real Madrid in Race to Sign Liverpool's Luis Suarez

Samuel MarsdenFeatured ColumnistJune 20, 2014

Uruguay's Luis Suarez celebrates scoring 2-1 during the group D World Cup soccer match between Uruguay and England at the Itaquerao Stadium in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Thursday, June 19, 2014.  (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
Michael Sohn/Associated Press

Luis Suarez lit up the World Cup on Thursday night, and on Friday morning he hit the papers in Spain.

They weren't crowning him for the two goals which kept Uruguay's World Cup hopes alive, thoughwell, partly thatbut linking him with a move to Barcelona. Real Madrid also remain interested.

Cynics might suggest that it's merely a ploy to generate website hits and interest on a day when people are going to be tapping "Luis Suarez" into Google.

However, it's not the first time he's been linked with Spain nor will it be the last in what could be a long summer, and he has a special connection with Catalania.

Also, these are two clubs who regularly try to land the world's best playersSuarez certainly sits in that category.

Lluis Mascaro, writing for Sport, a newspaper based in Barcelona, reports that Josep Maria Bartomeu is exploring the option of signing the Liverpool striker.

Several weeks ago members of the Barca board put the 27-year-old's name forward as a man who could arrive to re-ignite the fans' passion after a tired season last time out.

Suarez scores the winning goal against England
Suarez scores the winning goal against EnglandMichael Sohn/Associated Press

New Barca boss Luis Enrique also wants to add another forward to his rankspreferably one who can operate in the middle as a No. 9.

Pere Guardiola, Pep's brother, is Suarez's agent, so there is already a kind of Barcelona connection there.

But with the Anfield club set to (and quite rightly) demand €80-85 million for their star player, it would be understandable for the Blaugrana to back out of the bidding.

They already turned heads when they signed Neymar last summer, once again neglecting to sign a defender, and to perform the same faux pas during this transfer window would be unforgiveable.

Writing in Mundo Deportivo, though, a newspaper whose front page carried Suarez’s face on Friday morning, Fernando Polo and Xavi Munoz note that Suarez has a clause in his contract which would allow him to leave for €65 million should the bid be from Madrid or Barca.

Barca could then try to shrink the price by including a player in the dealAlexis Sanchez could be the key here.

Still, there would have to be a huge sum of money spent, and are Barca prepared to do that when they still need to overhaul other areas of the squad?

Suarez for his current club, Liverpool
Suarez for his current club, LiverpoolClint Hughes/Associated Press

His childrens' family live near to Barcelona
His childrens' family live near to BarcelonaLaurence Griffiths/Getty Images

For Suarez, who's wife's family lives in Castelldefells, a beachy area just outside of Barcelona, they just might be.

One club who wouldn't think twice about paying the €65 million it would take to bring Suarez to Spain is Real Madrid. Madrid's galactico hungry president Florentino Perez is more than happy to spend the money.

Karim Benzema currently sandwiches Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo, but there has previously been talk that Los Blancos would replace the French forward with the Uruguayan.

As recently as June 9, Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti, per Rik Sharma of the Daily Mail, refused to rule out a move for Suarez.

Back in Brazil, Suarez said he dreamt that he would score the two goals against England, per The Liverpool Echo's James Pearce, and the Catalan press would have us believe that he is also dreaming of signing for Barcelona.

In a brilliant article on ESPN, Wright Thompson explains how Luis Suarez used football as a tool to get him to Europe to be closer to his then-girlfriend, now wife, who had left Uruguay when he was 15.

Barcelona's interest would give the story an apt ending, allowing him to complete the journey he embarked on when he left his homeland for Groningen in 2006.