LONDON: Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers hailed hattrick hero Luis Suarez as a "wonderful talent" after Liverpool beat Norwich 5-2 at Carrow Road yesterday.
The 25-year-old Suarez became only the second player in Premier League history to strike a treble in consecutive appearances at a ground, after Wayne Rooney grabbed hattricks against Bolton at Reebok Stadium.
Suarez's goals came in the 7th, 38th and 57th minutes. The other goals were scored by Nuri Sahin and Steven Gerrard in the 47th and 68thminutes.
Norwich replied through Steve Morison and Grant Holt in the 61st and 87th minutes.
And Rodgers, after congratulating the rest of the squad, pointed out Suarez could have further added to his tally.
"The team, first and foremost, are the stars. We were very good. Individually, of course, to score another hattrick here, and wonderful goals as well," Rodgers told Sky Sports.
"His first one was a terrific finish. His second pays a lot to him mentally because he’d missed probably his easiest chance 10 seconds earlier, but didn’t let it affect him.
"He got the ball back very quickly and produced a great piece of skill on the edge of the box to get his finish. And his third one, he’s chopped back inside and finished it into the corner.
"He’s a wonderful talent and I’m fortunate today because he should’ve had a penalty but he doesn’t get anything in games.
"It’s unfortunate because he’s a real good guy. Overall the team were very good but I’m not surprised because they’ve been playing well but just not getting the results."
Suarez was also denied a penalty when Leon Barnett nudged him in the back but referee Mike Jones waved play on.
And Rodgers believes the Uruguay international striker’s reputation goes before him in those instances.
"There’s no doubt he doesn’t get the verdicts in the games that he should get. If Valencia’s is a penalty last week with barely any contact then surely Luis Suarez’s is today," said Rodgers.
"But we didn’t get it, I thought the referee had a good game but overall the performance and the goals were superb. And right to the very end I thought our work rate and intensity was very good. So a good day all round."
As for the performance, Rodgers was delighted to earn his first Premier League win at the Reds helm, and was impressed by his side's dominant display.
"It was fantastic. Norwich have a real set of good lads here and have worked very hard to get where they are. I know how tough a game this was but the plaudits are obviously with the Liverpool players," he said.
"I thought we were fantastic and scored five goals, maybe we could’ve had one or two more. Our control and domination of the game was very impressive, so I’m very pleased."