Patrice Evra promised to shake Luis Suarez’s hand and “make him feel” the Frenchman on the pitch in their June 6 Champions League final matchup.
Evra and Juventus will face Suarez and Barcelona in Berlin following Juve’s final-clinching 1-1 draw at the Bernabeu on Wednesday, and predictably the French left-back was asked about reacquainting with the Uruguayan with whom he shares a controversial history.
Suarez, then with Liverpool, was fined ₤40,000 and banned eight matches in 2011 after being found guilty of racially abusing Evra, then at Manchester United, during a match.
And while the two have played against each other since the incident — including when Suarez famously refused to shake Evra’s hand before a February 2012 encounter — the two will be forever linked and questions will persist.
“A lot of people ask me this question. It doesn’t matter. The most important thing is I play the final, you know,” Evra said of the two players’ pending reunion.
Suarez, for his part, has remained adamant he was falsely accused over the incident with Evra.
“I am proud to be what I am, I am proud about my colour and I will shake his hand, it is no problem,” Evra continued. “But I will make sure he will feel me on the pitch.”
The final also marks the reunion of Suarez and another figure from his controversial past, Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini. The Barca forward famously received a four-month ban for biting the Italian during Uruguay and Italy’s group stage match at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.