Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says he is not baffled by Arsene Wenger’s staunch admiration for their Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez.
The Merseyside outfit rejected two offers from the Premier League leaders last summer; the second 40,000 plus a pound package designed to trigger the 26-year-old striker’s buy-out clause.
Ahead of Saturday’s visit to the Emirate Stadium, Rogers expressed his satisfaction with the strikers attitude, stressing the Reds were hell bent on not letting their priced asset leave for a rival club during the last transfer window.
“I can understand why they were interested but we certainly were not going to sell to a rival and competitor,” said Northern Irishman.
“It certainly wasn’t an easy period. But we were very firm in our leadership that this was something we didn’t want to do and that this was the place for Luis to showcase his talents.”
Despite missing the first six Liverpool matches in the ongoing campaign while he was still serving his ten-match ban for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic, Suarez has immediately become a formidable force in the club’s frontline, partnering with Daniel Sturridge to tear apart other Premier League teams’ defence.
He has scored six goals in four matches as his hat-trick against West Brom last Saturday took him to the summit of the league’s scorers’ chart.
“I have seen an improvement from Luis with his maturity,” Rodgers added.
Liverpool could leapfrog Arsenal to go top of the Premier League standing, should they win on Saturday. Rodgers maintains the Anfield club can improve.
“We want to be up there challenging and winning trophies, that’s what Liverpool is all about. I believe we are in a good moment. We have started the season as we would have wanted and I think we can only get better and improve,” he noted.
The manager said Brazil midfielder Philippe Coutinho is set to return to action following a shoulder operation. The 21-year-old signed from Inter Milan in January for £8.5m, has not featured for the club since the 2-2 draw at Swansea on 16 September.