John Barnes: 'Fans to blame for Luis Suarez situation'

Barnes: 'Fans to blame for Suarez situation'
© PA Photos
John Barnes believes that football supporters have "empowered" players too much over the years.

Former Liverpool star John Barnes has said that modern football fans are partly to blame for Luis Suarez's feud with the club.

The ex-England midfielder believes that supporters have empowered players too much over the years, making them feel that they are bigger than their club.

"This is the future of modern football we have created. The media and especially the fans have empowered players too much to make them feel that a) they are better than their teammates and b) they're better than their clubs," he told talkSPORT.

"We've seen it at Arsenal where so many players have left because Arsenal cannot match their ambitions, and the fans are the ones who have created this superstar culture whereby you've separated the team and the superstars to feel more important than the club.

"What has empowered him and the likes of [Fernando] Torres is they feel team is losing not because of them but because of their teammates."

Barnes went on to say that Suarez should share the blame for Liverpool's failure to qualify for the Champions League last season.

He added: "Suarez is saying he needs to go because they've not qualified for the Champions League, but he was part of the team that failed to do that. He has to take responsibility for that. He's saying, 'I've done my job, I'm good enough, but the players I'm playing with aren't'.

"Our superstar players feel they are untouchable. We've gone too far and there's no way back.

"The fans have a lot to answer for. Don't fall in love with players because they will leave given the right circumstances. Support the club, support the group and then, if any player wants to step out of line, we won't support him. Maybe then they won't get over-inflated egos and behave the way they do."

Arsenal have had two bids rejected for Suarez, but Liverpool owner John W Henry has since ruled out the possibility of the striker joining the Gunners.

Liverpool's Luis Suarez holds his head in his hands after a missed chance during the match against Reading on April 13, 2013
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