Manaus: Luis Suarez has been criticised by Uruguay football great Alcides Ghiggia, the last survivor of the team which defeated Brazil to win the 1950 World Cup, and the man who scored the winning goal in the Maracana.
Ghiggia has become the first Uruguayan public figure to come out against the striker. Suarez “plays well but he has done things that are not normal for a player nor for a football game,” Ghiggia said.
“This boy’s clearly not right in the head. That’s just not something you do on the pitch. I think Fifa can sanction him.
“He already did it before in England and now he’s done it again. It’s abnormal. It’s a football match — not a war or a fight.”
However, Uruguay’s President Jose Mujica weighed in to the global controversy on Wednesday, saying it was unfair to judge him retrospectively for biting an Italian player when other incidents went un-reviewed.
Mujica, 79, a former guerrilla fighter and political prisoner, added that Fifa should not use television evidence to retrospectively punish players.
“I didn’t see him bite anyone and, in football, I was taught that you obey what the referee says,” Mujica said.
“If we’re going to take decisions in football based on what TV says, then there are loads of penalties and handballs you’d have to give that weren’t given, so bad luck.”
Mujica said the striker should be judged solely on his football ability and questioned why he should be held up as a behavioural role model.
“We didn’t choose him to be a philosopher, or a mechanic, or to have good manners,” he said. “He’s a great player.”
Meanwhile, Uruguay captain Diego Lugano said they were devastated after Fifa imposed the ban on Suarez.
"Indignation, impotence, devastated, I think that's what we all feel. We'd all like a fairer world, but that world simply does not exist. Those who rule, rule, and the strong ones are the strong ones... Keep feeling proud of him, he deserves it. Nothing will stop us. We will carry on with humility, union, determination, recognition of mistakes, and with our heads always high."
Former Brazil striker Ronaldo said he was happy with the punishment met out to Suarez.
"I never bit anyone, I know bites hurt. (If) my kids bite me they are punished in the dark room with the big bad wolf: that's the soccer equivalent of not playing soccer for four months."
Chile forward Alexis Sanchez said: "This is really bad for the World Cup, for the show, and it is really bad for Uruguay and the world of soccer."
Fifa vice-president Jim Boyce said that the punishment is completely justified.
"I think the punishment handed out by Fifa to Luis Suarez is fully justified. Hopefully, he will realise now that behaviour of this type will not be tolerated under any circumstances."
Dr Andrew Evans, a performance psychologist at Nottingham Trent University said the punishment won't serve as much of a deterrent to Suarez in the future.
"This punishment won't serve as much of a deterrent to Suarez in the future as it's too similar to previously imposed sanctions. What is really needed now is a psychological programme capable of promoting long-lasting behaviour change."