FIFA have begun disciplinary proceedings against Luis Suarez after the Uruguayan was caught on camera biting an opponent for the third time in his career.
His latest victim, Giorgio Chiellini of Italy, ran to the referee to reveal a set of horrifying teeth marks on his shoulder, but no action was taken on the field.
After the game, Chiellini made the extraordinary claim that Suarez had not been carded because FIFA were reluctant to see one of the world’s finest players banned for the remainder of the tournament.
However, his actions were impossible to ignore, and the Uruguayan FA have now been given until 9pm on Wednesday to plead their case and present any relevant documentary evidence.
After a barrage of criticism from the British media, the man-eating marvel came so close to redeeming himself after a fantastic season with Liverpool. His goals almost fired them to the title, but for a late collapse. The Reds had backed him through his numerous trials and tribulations, and finally, it really did seem that the pros were outweighing the cons.
This, of course, was not Suarez’s first brush with the game’s laws. In a less well-documented incident, during his time at Ajax, he was banned for seven games after chomping the ear of PSV Eindhoven’s Otman Bakk.
A move to England did little to improve his woeful attitude, and if anything, it has made it worse. Despite the potential long-lasting damage to their global reputation, Liverpool took him on, soon to find themselves without him as he was banned for allegedly racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.
Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic was next to suffer at his hands – or teeth – but somehow, the Uruguayan’s desperate pleas that he was simply misunderstood seemed to cut some ice.
That can no longer be the case. Even some of the most outrageous tackles can be partly justified as moments of madness in the heat of the game, but biting does not fall into that category. There is an element of the self-destructive about Suarez. Something within appears determined to turn the beautiful game ugly.
It is no use blaming England’s peculiarly anti-biting media for his unpopularity. He was unlikely to return to a hero’s welcome having scored the goals that effectively knocked England out of the World Cup, but Liverpool’s executives must be giving some serious thought to whether he is too much of a liability.
Unfortunately, if the Anfield club harbour any hopes to go one better next season and win the Premier League, they are at present, almost entirely dependent on his services.