Luis Suarez has hit back at critics who blamed Barcelona’s dismal recent run on Neymar’s form.
The Uruguay international scored four times and set up another three as the Liga leaders thrashed Deportivo La Coruna 8-0 to end a run of three consecutive defeats in the top flight.
Neymar was singled out for criticism in Spain as Barca allowed Atletico Madrid to draw level on points at the top of the table and knock the holders out of the Champions League, but Suarez insists that their form is down to the collective.
“When things are going badly we all take responsibility,” he said at a charity event. “Over the past few days one person has been blamed but that’s not the way it is. We’re not machines; every player goes through a bad patch and it hurts that Neymar has been blamed.
“When we were winning nobody said that only Ney was winning. It’s about the team. He has feelings and it wasn’t fair to blame him, but one thing in his favour is that he always fights and never lets his head drop.
“We [the front three] are aware of our importance to the team but nobody is untouchable and no-one should be responsible on his own when things are going wrong.”
Suarez moved onto 49 goals in 48 games for the season in Wednesday’s rout at the Riazor, surpassing the tally set by former Barca star Ronaldo, who scored 48 times in his only season at Camp Nou in 1996-97.
“I’m proud and overtaking Ronaldo is a privilege, he has been a huge star all over the world,” Suarez said.
“What we have to do is enjoy the moment playing for the best team in the world. It is an honour to beat one of the best in the world.”