Liverpool Transfer News: Steven Gerrard Urges Luis Suarez to Stay at Anfield

Matt Cheetham@@Matt_CheethamCorrespondent IAugust 1, 2013

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - AUGUST 30:  Steven Gerrard of Liverpool congratulates Luis Suarez on scoring during the UEFA Europa League play-off round second leg between Liverpool and Hearts at Anfield on August 30, 2012 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Steven Gerrard has added his own weight to the Luis Suarez transfer saga, encouraging Liverpool to hold on to their controversial talisman.

In a lengthy interview with the Liverpool Echo's James Pearce, the Reds skipper revealed he's in constant dialogue with his Uruguayan teammate, pleading with him to remain at Anfield.

I've spoken to Luis loads and of course I'm trying to get him to stay.

We will have to wait and see if I have any joy. It's a difficult one from a team-mate's perspective as you've got to show a player respect. Luis is his own guy and makes his own decisions. But Luis Suarez knows what I want him to do, don't worry about that.

Suarez's haul of 23 goals during last season's Premier League campaign made him second top scorer in England and also accounted for an impressive 32 percent of his side's total strikes.

Considering the Reds finished in a disappointing seventh position12 points off the pace for the Champions League and even two points behind near-neighbours Evertonit's easy to see just how much his side rely on him.

Without his goals, Brendan Rodgers would have had a far harder time settling in during his inaugural season in charge at Anfield.

At the second time of asking, Liverpool's manager will be expected to lead his side considerably closer to the top four—something Gerrard believes hinges on Suarez's future.

Where we sit right now all depends on what decision Luis Suarez makes in the next few weeks. If we lose him then the challenge becomes even more difficult for Liverpool. It's that simple.

If we get the couple of marquee signings we need and keep Luis that will give me confidence that we can compete. Keeping Luis could be our best signing of the summer.

The fact that Barcelona seem content with their transfer business thus far and Real Madrid appear more occupied with Gareth Bale is certainly in Liverpool's favour for the moment.

Had there been genuine interest from Spain, the allure of both Spanish giants may have already caused Suarez to hand in an official transfer request. However, as it stands, Arsenal are the most interested party, which strengthen's Liverpool's stance.

As Gerrard states via Pearce's interview, selling to such a close rival with limited recent success—in terms of trophies—wouldn't make sense to either Suarez or Liverpool.

If he goes to Arsenal, it obviously makes our season that bit more difficult. It strengthens them an awful lot and they are our rivals for a top four position. From the club's point of view it doesn't make sense at all, no matter how much money is put on the table.

With two Arsenal offers already rejected, it seems the Gunners are looking for Suarez to aid their bidding by forcing Liverpool's hand.

If Gerrard has his way, that won't be any time soon.