Who ticks the box? The idea of this blog came from one of the click bait tweets you get following our club. It was simply ‘is Luis Suarez a Liverpool legend’?
Damned good player, but I went for a ‘no’. Why am I so gullible? Do I buy every advert I see? I don’t, but answering a question about my beloved club is free apart from a few seconds and, as the instigator knows, if you tap into passion you’re going to get a reply!
So why was he not on my legend list? Firstly, can I say what an amazing player Suarez was, and he gave absolutely everything? The closest I saw him was row five at the Emirates in the FA Cup. I’ve rarely seen a player give so much for the cause. We’d destroyed Arsenal days before at Anfield and he tried to turn this game around single-handedly, winning one penalty and being denied another by Howard Webb who, as he admitted in his biography, simply bottled it.
The best I saw him was at Anfield against Norwich; he simply destroyed them with some of the best goals I’ve seen.
🗓 #OnThisDay in 2013…
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 4, 2017
Surely he’s a legend then, so why did I say ‘no’?
Ok. Let’s start with what a legend for your club is. For me, the ability, along with application, is a given. They should probably win trophies and play a major part in the successes. They also need to bleed red (pun intended) and recognise that playing for our mighty reds should be the pinnacle of any career. They’re allowed to leave if no longer in first team, but certainly no move to ‘advance their careers’
On this score, the likes of Owen, Suarez, Coutinho and Torres aren’t getting a ‘legends’ shirt.
Off an a slight tangent. I’ve watched the ‘Liverpool Legends’ five-a-side team a few times. Barnes and Molby ok, but Mike Marsh?
Anyway, on we go…
So I like my personal legends to be part of a great team or, if not possible, push on an average team to nearing greatness. I hear Steven Gerrard easing out a large sigh of relief, lol. Stevie, you’re in you’ll be glad to know! Actually Gerrard dragged a poor team to some sort of success, often single-handedly. What a player, what a heart that pumped red blood (yes I’m getting predictable now).
Apart from our recent successes, you probably need to go back to the eighties teams to find definite ‘legends’- they won everything numerous times. First on the legends team sheet has to be King Kenny. Marvellous player, decent manager and what he did for the Hillsborough families will never be forgotten. I was going to add previously that you get an extra point for being a scouser. Well, if you’re from outside and get truly accepted, that should maybe be two extra points! You don’t necessarily need to get yourself a scouse accent like Jan Molby, just be so engrossed in our club and city to make a massive difference.
So, apart from Mr Kenneth Dalglish, who else from that era are legends? I’ll go for John Barnes and Alan Hansen for starters. Both were total class and were integral parts of great teams. Ian Rush is another definite. The greatest finisher I’ve seen and loves our club still. I would go for Graeme Souness as a player, but his involvement with The Sun takes him off my list.
I just about remember Kevin Keegan. He was my favourite player as a kid and he was amazing in the 1977 European Cup final. I’m calling in my writer’s prerogative to let him into our exclusive club!
What about our recent successful team? I think by definition a legend has to be someone in the past, but I think this group have a number who will be seen as legends in years to come. Mo Salah certainly, one of the very best I’ve seen, but also Trent Alexander-Arnold, Allison Becker and Virgil van Dijk. What about Bobby Firmino? He was loved above others with similar ability, he was so joyous in the way he went about his work.
I’ve probably missed loads out. Jamie Carragher and Robbie Fowler were special and get the scouse point, for example.
I’ve not gone into those who I don’t remember. Tommy Smith, Emlyn Hughes, Ian Callaghan and Phil Thompson were finishing their careers as I was starting mine as a supporter.
So, let the discussion begin! How would you define a Liverpool Legend and who do you think should be included?
Till next time…
If you like Dr Andy Hershon’s writing, check out his book – 15 Minutes With You: Tips on Medical Consulation and Other Musings