9 Sept 2013

'There were talks': World Cup goal-machine 'was interested' in joining LFC. So close.....

With the likes of Robbie Fowler, Steve McManaman, John Barnes, and Stan Collymore in the same team, Roy Evans' Liverpool were one the most exciting team of the 1990s. Between 1995 and 1997, the Reds put in strong challenges for the Premier League title, but defensively, the club didn't have enough to maintain the charge. On the goalscoring front, however, the Reds were out of this world at times, and it could've been even better if Evans had got his way with transfers.

In a recent interview, Evans - whose teams never finished outside the top four - confirmed that he tried to sign Argentinean legend Gabriel Batistuta. He told LiverpoolFC.com:

"There were talks of him moving from Italy to somewhere else. We had an interest; there were some conversations between Liverpool and his club [Fiorentina]. He was interested, but unfortunately it just didn't happen.

"It was one of those things where you make an enquiry and it just didn't go any further than that. I'm sure he would have been a great acquisition for us if we had got him."

Batistuta at Anfield? What an amazing coup that would've been!

* 200+ goals in Serie A, (arguably) the most difficult league in which to score goals.
* 56 goals in 78 international matches, which remains a record for Argentina.
* 10 goals in the World Cup Finals.

At the time of the Reds' interest, Robbie Fowler was on fire at Anfield, and scored 30+ goals in three consecutive seasons. Additionally, Fowler formed a fantastic partnership with Stan Collymore, and from 1995-1997, they notched up 102 goals and countless assists between them.

If Batistuta had signed for LFC, Collymore would've undoubtedly taken a back seat, or - depending on the timing - his signing may never have even taken place.

Batistuta is clearly the more attractive proposition, but I have to admit, I have a soft-spot for Collymore's time at LFC, and his winning goal against Newcastle in the 4-3 at Anfield in 1996 is possibly my favourite ever LFC goal.

Still, I doubt most fans would complain if Batistuta got the nod over Collymore. The question is, if the Argentinean had signed, how would it have affected Fowler's development, if at all...?

Possible line-up with Batistuta:

------------------ James

------ Scales --- Wright --- Ruddock

Jones -------------------------- McAteer

---------- Barnes --- Redknapp

-------------- McManaman

--------- Fowler --- Batistuta

Tasty! On a related note - could the current Liverpool team operate effectively using Evans' preferred 3-5-2 formation? Brendan Rodgers certainly has the players to implement that system:

----------------- Mignolet

------ Toure ----- Sakho --- Agger

Johnson ----------------------- Enrique

---------- Gerrard --- Lucas

-------------- Coutinho

--------- Suarez --- Sturridge

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  1. I'm sure we 3-5-2 last season, didn't we? Collymore (when his head was straight) Fowler and McManaman, at times were simply awesome.

  2. He also wanted to sign Desailly, Litamen, Riedle and Sheringham yet the Liverpool board at the time would not sanction the deals.

    Just imagine what we could of won if they had !!!

  3. Batigol. Drool.

    Got plenty of top 4 finishes under Evans eh ;)

    Definitely were a very good side to watch, even if one knew we just never had enough to make that final push for the title in the latter third of the season.

  4. LIVERPOOL played some great stuff under ROY EVANS.The games against NEWCASTLE were a joy to watch.We played dominant pass and move football.But like you said we never had that little bit extra you need to be Premier League champions.
    The reason is clear we had outstanding midfield and striking options but the defence was barely PL quality never mind LFC standard.

  5. McDermotts in the 7 nil rout of Spurs is my all time favourite but Stans is up there for the circumstances it was scored in, Battigoal at Anfield would have been mouthwatering, especially partnered with God & Barnesy :)

  6. Oh man, looking at the team with Mark Wright as defender, Jamie Redknapp as midfielder and Robbie Fowler as striker. It's all about good old days even though that team did not win any championship. .

  7. who else wants jordan henderson up front for swansea
    with aspas ,coutinho and moses feeding of him
    imo aspas is too weak up front and hendo can hold the ball up , provide a physical presence and he makes really clever runs in behind the defences

  8. suarez,sturridge,coutinho deadly
    gerrard,lucas,henderso and allen 110%
    johnson,toure,skho,agger and enrique solid
    mignolet different class

  9. Jamie on another note why do lfc not produce any of their own players?

    why do the likes of rooney ,barkley and rodwell join everton rather then liverpool?
    why do lfc not produce scouse players like this ?

    and why do our acedemy shed foreign talents in that are never gonna make it

    adorgan,silva,nembeth,dalla valle,trexiera,pacheco ,bijev,sama etc
    only one foreigner graduated suso

    whats the point of foreign players in our acedmy jamie?

  10. its a complete waste of time buying young foreign players for our academy when only 1 out of 25 makes it
    suso who else has made it

  11. our whole academy is shambles where are all the kids that start from the age of 8 or 12 ? kelly? only one?
    why do only everton find them
    i want the same coaches that found fowler ,mcmannamn,owen ,gerrard and carragher

  12. that line up could work jk.....but lucas and gerrad would have to graft

  13. It would have been a dream to have him in a Liverpool shirt. I loved this guy when I was a teen. An absolute rocket of a shot. Seem to remember him scoring a screamer against Man U years ago from about 35 yards. What a player.