21 May 2014

He's the Best: Suarez hails 'famous' goal-machine who almost signed for LFC

In the mid-1990s, Liverpool made an audacious bid to sign goalscoring legend Gabriel Batistuta, and it transpires that the Argentine striker is one of Luis Suarez's biggest inspirations.

Speaking to the official Liverpool FC website today, Suarez enthused:

"When you are a kid, you want to be like many famous footballers.

"When I was growing up, there was only one player I looked up to: Batistuta, the Argentina No.9. I always liked his personality and his way of playing."

In a recent interview, former Reds boss Roy Evans - whose teams never finished outside the top four - confirmed that he tried to sign Batistuta. He told LFC.com:

"We had an interest [in Batistuta]. There were some conversations between Liverpool and his club [Fiorentina]. He was interested, but unfortunately it just didn't happen. I'm sure he would have been a great acquisition for us"

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 120 goals/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




  1. Perhaps not what you might call a typical Latin American player in terms of his technical skills, but very strong, with the ability to shoot quickly and with deadly accuracy with either foot. More than a goal every two games spanning his entire career speaks for itself. He was ridiculously prolific during that spell at Fiorentina; God-like. One of a glut of foreign players that I remember watching with great fondness, like Gheorghi Hagi or Hristo Stoichkov. Frankly the idea of having Fowler and Batistuta up front at Liverpool is just too much pleasure for me to handle.

  2. we don't want 'Cashley' cole at lfc

  3. Suarez has surpassed him in terms pure footballing ability.

  4. Speaking of favourite goals. My favourite goal this past season was Flanagan's strike vs Spurs when we totally annihilated them 5-0 which was also my favourite game of the season. Flanno's reaction and all our players joining in on the celebration was just classic! Another favourite moment was when Flanno introduced Roberto Soldado to the EPL at Anfield. This young lad is exactly what our squad needed. The Scouse Cafu!

  5. Mike Aitcheson8:04 pm, May 21, 2014

    except he's 31

  6. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06kADk_C7W0

  7. The age factor scares me a bit.

    If this is a Kolo Toure situation where we are bringing him in for depth and a veteran's perspective... I'd probably be ok with it (in spite of my disdain for him).

    If this is a situation where we expect him to start regularly... I'm not so sure I'm convinced this is the right way to go.

  8. Imran Mohammed9:43 pm, May 21, 2014

    I believe in the mid 1980's we were on the brink of signing Michael Laudrup. That would have been an even greater capture then Batistuta.

  9. When was this time? FSG sanctioned Bellamy, Joe Cole and Doni. All in their 30s.

  10. Sturridge not worth a mention? I think we've done better out of transactions with Chelsea. Benayoun and Torres...

  11. So many people going on about his age and comparing him to Kolo, but I don't see any of them calling for Gerrard to retire. AC's the same age as Yaya. Is he too old too?

  12. obviously. I'm just saying that people said Carra didn't have the skill set but his passion and commitment did make up for that. Flanno IMO will turn out to be the same.

  13. He's me best mate lad!

  14. Rodgers would play all three of them. Collymore would be converted to sit in behind the two strikers, Barnes stays wider, Redknapp holding midfield and McManaman the creator in the middle. Although given the reputation of the lads at the time I don't think Rodgers would have many of them in his current team without a massive attitude adjustment.