At 10:54 a.m. in the capital of Montevideo, his friend Leo Messi’s plane landed on the main runway. It was the end of a dizzying 24-day process, which dropped off Luis Suárez and his family (Sofía, Delfina, Benjamín and Lautaro) in Uruguay, to play for the next 99 days at the club where he was born. , before the Qatar World Cup.
The country was revolutionized. There is no citizen, more or less interested in football, who does not generate a reference to Luis Suárez. The historic striker of blue sky, with 68 conquests, 35 years old, but in top form, returns to play for the country. A utopia come true.
On Messi’s plane
Nacional hired Messi’s plane to bring Suárez back from Barcelona. He did not come back alone, he arrives accompanied by the family. First key detail. “Here are the uncles, the cousins. My children are super happy to come and live in Uruguay,” said the “shooter.” The family supported and added to the decision. Point in favor of return.
15 kilometer caravan
Suárez’s first hour and a half in Uruguay was spent at the airport, surrounded by intimate friends and Nacional executives. Also the first interview on the club’s official website, in which he confessed some stories.
“In March, Chino (Alvaro) Recoba was talking to me, when I inaugurated the works (in his sports complex in Ciudad de la Costa, next to the capital Montevideo). And he said to me ‘it’s brave to come back, don’t do it’. When all this movement started a few days ago, I see a Chinese wap. I open it, and Chino started walking around, and at the end he tells me that it wouldn’t be not bad to go back. It rocked in the air!!!!”
Leo wishes him good luck
Suárez also revealed that “Lio (Messi) wrote to me. He wished me good luck at this stage. He also wrote that it was good because he was going to be surrounded by family, affection.”
At 12:30 p.m. the caravan started, with a kind of “SUAREZMOVIL”, which covered a good part of the Rambla Montevideo. It should be clarified that the concept of Rambla in Uruguay is different from that of Barcelona. Here, the Rambla borders the entire coast of the Río de la Plata, for many kilometres.
People, with flags, t-shirts, papers, anything from Nacional, stood at the edge of the street to greet Suárez. A real madness.
In Great Central Park
Around two o’clock in the afternoon, he arrived at Great Central Park, the historic stage where the first match in the history of the World Cups was played. A great show had been prepared there, with musical performances, videos, emotions.
A reasonable entrance fee was requested, between 10 and 15 euros per person, and the stage, with a capacity of just over 30,000 spectators, was practically full.
The “Loco” Sebastián Abreu, author of the decisive penalty of the Celestes during the match against Ghana for the quarter-finals in South Africa 2010, was the master of ceremonies in the very center of the field of play. Luis was surrounded by Sofía and their children.
He got excited. “I’m here for you and because I want to be there,” he proclaims, as the audience explodes. “I am convinced that we can win everything. La Clausura, the Uruguayan, the Uruguayan Cup, the South American Cup”, to the delight of fans of the Uruguayan tricolor.
7,000 Suarez shirts
To measure the arrival of Luis Suárez to the Nacional, a fact. Normally, around 10,000 T-shirts are sold per year by the institution. This Sunday, in parallel with the reception of the attacker in Central Park, 7,000 jerseys number “9” with Suárez on the back were put on sale. And they went like hotcakes. They plan to sell at least 30,000 in total. Rage is at its height.
Nacional fans are at their best, the time of illusion, in which any dream is always bigger than any reality. Almost in a cloud, without yet being able to prove that the return of Luis Suárez is a reality.
But it is a fact. After a very intense Sunday, preceded by a 12-hour flight from Barcelona, comes a Monday with a light workout.
May starts Tuesday
On Tuesday, he will appear in court. He will start on the substitutes bench, and if the predictions come true, he could play a few minutes against the Brazilian Goianiense for the first leg of the quarter-finals of the Copa Sudamericana. It will be time on the pitch, and then Suárez will have to express himself with his goals, the usual ones, those of Barcelona, Liverpool, Atlético de Madrid, Ajax, sky blue. Those who were and those who will come.