x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

History repeated as Suarez destroys Norwich

Suarez scored a memorable treble at Carrow Road last season, and he repeated the feat yesterday as he almost single-handedly tore Norwich apart in a 5-2 win.

Luis Suarez celebrates after scoring the opening goal of his hat-trick.
Luis Suarez celebrates after scoring the opening goal of his hat-trick.

NORWICH // Brendan Rodgers hailed a "finishing masterclass" from Luis Suarez after the forward scored his second hat-trick at Norwich in five months to hand the Liverpool manager his first win in charge.

Suarez scored a memorable treble at Carrow Road last season, and he repeated the feat yesterday as he almost single-handedly tore Norwich apart in a 5-2 win.

The Uruguayan opened the scoring from the edge of the box after just 67 seconds and made amends for missing a one-on-one chance by robbing Michael Turner and slotting past John Ruddy to make it 2-0.

Suarez unselfishly played in Nuri Sahin for Liverpool's third after the break before he completed his hat-trick with a superb curling effort from 18 yards just before the hour. "His goals here were incredible last year and this was another masterclass in finishing apart from the one on one chance," Rodgers said.

"His first goal was terrific. The second one typifies him because he missed his easiest chance he had, but he didn't get disappointed, won back the ball, nutmegged the defender with an incredible piece of skill and then to finish the way he did was brilliant.

"It was a special day for him and the team."

Steven Gerrard completed the rout with a deflected effort and Norwich were booed off, at half-time and full-time, despite consolation goals from Grant Holt and Steve Morison.

A debate has surrounded whether Suarez goes down too easily pretty much since he arrived in England from Ajax in January 2011. The forward was booked for simulation against Sunderland, and last week he was denied a penalty against Manchester United when he appeared to be taken out by Jonny Evans.

The issue reared its head again yesterday in the first half when Leon Barnett barged into the back of Suarez in the box.

Referee Mike Jones did not award the penalty, much to the disappointment of Rodgers.

"It was a stonewall penalty," he said. "I feel for the guy [Suarez], I really do. Everyone in the ground knew it was a penalty. Maybe one day we will get the decision. Until that point we just continue to concentrate on our performance."

The victory was Rodgers' first at the sixth attempt.

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