FOLLOWING the much debated and widely popular “100 Players Who Shook The Kop” series that appeared in 2006, Liverpool FC are re-launching their prestigious countdown for 2013.
The website is welcoming fans to submit their Top 10 until the end February, so please do so by clicking here.
The official site will be revealing the results in a countdown over the forthcoming summer.
In 2006 the Top 10 Players Who Shook The Kop looked like this:
3. Ian Rush
4. Robbie Fowler
5. John Barnes
7. Jamie Carragher
8. Kevin Keegan
9. Graeame Souness
10. Emlyn Hughes
Few could doubt the worthiness of these players as Liverpool greats, but fewer still would have picked this exact combination of players in this order. The list, by virtue of the types of LFC fans who frequent the website (i.e. internet savvy), is always likely to favour more recent players, over players of a bygone age that fewer fans have had the privilege to watch, but it is nevertheless a strong indicator of which players are held in the highest esteem by those for whom the club exists, us fans.
The 2006 list however did come up with some anomalies and strange decisions, in my view:
Jerzy Dudek (No.36) higher than Elisha Scott (No.41)
Luis Garcia (No.24) higher than Xabi Alonso (No. 33)
Vladimir Smicer (No. 64) higher than Ronnie Moran (No.70)
With the likes of Eric Meier (No.99) and Nigel Clough (No. 97) sneaking in at the end.
Rather than disproving the wisdom of crowds this is perhaps more indicative of the afterglow of Istanbul that was still fresh when the survey was made in 2006. No doubt the more recent excellence of players like Luis Suarez and Lucas Leiva will see them join the 100 and push a few others out, but while our history and tradition is the bedrock of who we are as a club, the present perhaps understandably takes a front seat as new greats and legends are created.
Perhaps a distinct lack of glorious moments since the last survey (beating Cardiff City on penalties in the League Cup doesn’t really compare to beating Milan on penalties in the European Cup) will mean that a higher focus is placed on great players from former generations.
At the risk of being pilloried I have made my choices on my Top 10 Players ‘Who Shook The Kop’, submitted on the LFC website and sharing them with you below.
I disclose beforehand, that I made a couple of ‘strategic’ decisions in my list which I will explain in a moment.
1. Billy Liddell
2. Steven Gerrard
3. Kenny Dalglish
4. John Barnes
5. Elisha Scott
6. Alan Hansen
7. Graeme Souness
8. Emlyn Hughes
9. Steve McManaman
10. Jan Molby
Any Top 10 list by any Liverpool fan is going to be controversial and no doubt many of you are shaking their heads at some of my selections, but hopefully we can all agree that these were fantastic players for our club during the time they played – regardless of in what circumstances they left the club (McManaman), or subsequent damage they did to the club (Souness as a manager and critic).
A few things I want to explain in regards to my choices above.
I have made a decision (whether you call it strategic voting or bias I don’t really mind) to place Billy Liddell 1st and Elisha Scott 5th so that they are hopefully placed higher than the 6th and 41st positions they achieved in the 2006 Survey.
Many of the elder generation of Liverpool fans won’t vote in this survey, but I have a belief that if all Liverpool fans, both living and deceased, had a chance to vote, Billy Liddell may well have come out top. When we were in the old 2nd Division, if it hadn’t been for Billy Liddel’s goals and superhuman performances we would have been relegated to the then 3rd Division and heaven knows what would have happened.
Anyone who saw Billy play (and subsequently also watched Kenny and Stevie) still place Billy Liddell at the top. Their voices are unfortunately too few nowadays as time takes its inevitable toll, so I chose to add mine to theirs.
Elisha Scott played over 400 games for Liverpool under extremely difficult circumstances and I believe that goalkeepers are not as highly valued in these surveys as they should be.
I put Stevie G ahead of Kenny for the same reason Carragher does; he is a World Class player amongst mediocre players, while Kenny had so many fantastic players to play alongside. Another aspect to my decision is that Stevie, in my opinion, is a more complete player – there is no weakness to his game. You can play him left-wing or right-back and he’d still be fantastic.
My ‘favourite’ Liverpool player is John Barnes, but I do not believe him to be a better player than Kenny so he sits in a respectable fourth. I have a soft spot for technically gifted players, I made a post a few weeks back on what I considered to be ‘Liverpool Quality‘, and hopefully my selection echoes this. It is for this reason that Jan Molby sneaks in at No.10.
I know I am likely to get a lot of criticism for picking McManaman ahead of wonderful players like Steve Heighway or Kevin Keegan, but during the period he played, all our good play went through him. He was pivotal in the trophies we won during the time and we really would have been nowhere without him.
Robbie Fowler has gone on record many times to say he was the best player he ever played with, and there’s no doubt that Robbie wouldn’t have scored half the goals he did without his mate Macca.
To be honest, he is the only selection that I made that I still wonder if I should have, but when I removed my rancour over the way he left the club for free and some of things said that were attributed to him, I found it difficult to leave him out of my Top 10.
So there we have it. My Top 10 Liverpool Players Who Shook The Kop. I’d love to hear who your Top 10 are and why you chose them in the comments below!
You can catch more from me on my own blog: http://taintlessred.blogspot.co.uk/