20 and counting: Manchester United’s fans celebrate the club’s latest championship. *AFP photo
20 and counting: Manchester United’s fans celebrate the club’s latest championship. *AFP photo

He’s always shown an appetite for goals, the lad.

He gave the Reds bite but really let down his fangs.

Now the FA have starved him of football for 10 games.

What’s that sound? Ah yes, that’s Sir Alex Ferguson laughing his backside off while his players pass around the Premier League trophy.

Just when United thought their week couldn’t get any better after winning their 20th league title, Liverpool striker Suarez gets slapped with a 10-game ban for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic.

It was ugly, of course, and disturbingly primal. For a frustrated player to lash out with leg or fist would have been bad enough, something we could have all at least related to but not condoned. But to react by biting someone? That’s just downright weird.

Of course it’s not the first time he’s done it, which may explain the FA’s heavy punishment. In true bumbling fashion, though, they fail to find consistency. Is biting worse than racism? They obviously think so having given the Uruguayan an eight-match ban for his spat with Patrice Evra.

Not that Evra will care too much anymore — anyone see him pretending to bite a fake limb as his team celebrated winning the league?

Suarez’s incisors should not overshadow United’s thoroughly deserved success. Let’s be clear — over the course of the season, they were the best team by a country mile and a class act.

However, the chasing pack need to (cliché alert) take a long look in the mirror. City folded during pressure games over Christmas, Chelsea can’t decide on a manager and persist with an expensive failure up front and Arsenal continue to go backwards. Spurs need more than Bale, Everton are wringing every last ounce of their squad while Liverpool are still in teething mode .

As so often in Sir Alex’s reign, the rest are simply left to applaud.

11am unless stated

Man City v West Ham
The Hammers will surely now hand Big Sam a new contract after the superb job he’s done. Again, proving what an effective manager he is. City, still smarting from the defeat at Spurs, will be too much, though.
Prediction: 3-1

Everton v Fulham
Staying ahead of city rivals Liverpool should be motivation enough. One league defeat in seven shows their form is good –— too good for Fulham.
Prediction: 2-0

Southampton v West Brom
Battle for mid-table supremacy should be a triumphant day for both sets of fans, with neither having to stress about the relegation scrap. Increasingly-slick looking Southampton have the edge with this one.
Prediction: 2-1

Stoke v Norwich
Last week’s win over QPR has eased some of their worries but the Potters have work to do — as do the Canaries, though. A win for either side would pretty much secure survival.
Prediction: 2-1

Wigan v Tottenham
Wigan are in the deep stuff after defeat to West Ham last time out. They need a result — and Spurs are in no mood to be dishing out gifts.
Prediction: 1-2

Newcastle v Liverpool
Alan Pardew’s men have been sucked back into the relegation dogfight and face a Liverpool side minus Suarez, of course. That can only help Newcastle, who will be good for a draw here.
Prediction: 1-1


Reading v QPR
Both down. Both deserved. Reading didn’t have the quality, QPR didn’t have the brains.

Chelsea v Swansea
If Rafa Benitez ensures one thing this season, it’ll be to keep Chelsea in the top four — a minimum requirement, of course, for a directionless club whose talented roster continues to keep them ticking over. Addition of Falcao would be a superb buy.
Prediction: 3-1

Arsenal v Man United
Will Arsenal give the champions a guard of honour? Will Gunners fans throw up? Probably. This game will show  the chasm between the two sides.
Prediction: 1-2


Aston Villa v Sunderland
Big game, in particular for the Villans. A win would heap the pressure on Wigan in the bottom three. However, they must get past a Sunderland team infused with the passion of a certain Italian. What’s fascism again?
Prediction: 2-2