As he prepares to return to international football after serving a nine-match international ban for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini at the 2014 World Cup, an unrepentant Luis Suarez remains convinced that he was harshly treated by football’s governing body.

The Barcelona forward says he has been “treated worse than a hooligan” as he prepares to end his lengthy ban from competitive international football.

Suarez was handed a four-month ban from all football-related activity and has not played for Uruguay since a friendly international against Costa Rica in November 2014. The prolific striker will now return to competitive action in the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers against Brazil and Peru.

“It’s been such a long time so I’m obviously very keen, but I’m also relieved that it’s finally all over,” Suarez told El Observador.

“The worst is behind me and now it’s time to enjoy playing for Uruguay again, which is what I’ve spent so long waiting for.”

Despite the fact that the biting incident with Chiellini was the third of its kind involving Suarez, the former Liverpool man refuses to accept that the punishment reflected his recidivist tendencies. Instead, as he has throughout his career, Suarez remains convinced that he was hard done by.

“I was treated worse than a hooligan, because banning someone from a football match, a training session, is just incomprehensible,” he added.

“Four months without being able to play a competitive game and a two-year international ban is too much. It just doesn’t make sense. It’s almost worse than if I’d failed a doping test.”

Suarez has been in incredible form for Barcelona this season, scoring 43 goals in 42 appearances in all competitions.