No player scored more goals in Europe than Luis Suarez last season and only Cristiano Ronaldo could match his total of 31, yet England manager Roy Hodgson still refused to call him "world class" before facing Uruguay at the World Cup. This match was to be Suarez's first appearance since undergoing knee surgery four weeks ago and the combination Hodgson's words and the media focus on that knee combined to give Suarez all the motivation he needed to score both of Uruguay's goals in their 2-1 win over England.
From the Guardian:
"He [Suárez] will only be at that level when he shows it on this particular stage [the World Cup],” Hodgson said. Those words, and the constant talk about Suárez’s knee injury, made the striker more determined to make a full recovery and defeat Hodgson’s side.
“It wasn’t revenge, but in England they talked about the injury and the coach had words that annoyed [me],” Suárez was quoted as saying on the Uruguayan website Tenfield.
After the match, Suarez was in tears as he spoke to reporters. With the importance of the moment made clear by his show of emotion, he said, "For all the moments that I've lived and the criticisms we've received...there you have it."
So now Suarez has given Uruguay new life after their 3-1 loss to Costa Rica to start the World Cup and Hodgson is fielding questions about whether he will resign following England's two losses — the first time they have ever started a World Cup so poorly.
Before England's final group-stage match against Costa Rica, he will probably call each one of their players "world class" just to be on the safe side.
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