888poker has added another ambassador to its already impressive roster by signing Liverpool and Uruguay striker Luis Suarez.
Suarez won the 2014 Professional Footballer’s Association Player of the Year for his fantastic performances on the field for Liverpool during the 2013-14 season, a season that saw him find the back of the net 31 times including scoring two hat tricks and a four-goal haul in the 5-1 victory at home to Norwich City.
The Senior Vice President of 888, Itai Pazner, had this to say about the signing of the talented, but often controversial, Uruguayan: “Luis Suarez is an incredible sporting talent; passionate, competitive, technically gifted, and emotionally invested in the game. It’s those qualities that make him an exciting player to watch, in poker as well as football. It’s fantastic to have him on board.”
According to a press release, Suarez will immediately become an integral member of Team 888poker and will be found playing regularly online at 888poker and will participate in live events and “money-can’t-buy experiences.”
Suarez joins fellow non-poker pros Shane Warne and UFC legend Georges St-Pierre at Team 888poker who are backed up by 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event finalist JC Tran and recent female additions Xuan Liu and former PKR sponsored pro Sofia Lövgren.
While there is no doubting Suarez’s football ability or the fact he is an instantly recognisable figure, and some may say a global icon, his signing does come as a surprise.
Wherever Suarez plays, controversy follows. He has a reputation in the Barclay’s Premier League and someone who dives to gain an unlawful advantage, served an eight—game suspension during the 2011-12 season after being found guilty of racially abusing Manchester United’s Patrice Evra and then in April 2013 was handed a record ten-match ban after being found guilty of biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic – the second biting incident of his career.
With online poker companies wanting to maintain a squeaky clean image, especially when listed on the London Stock Exchange, Suarez’s signing is sure to raise a few eyebrows among the poker community and outside of it too.