Skip to main content

Ranked! The 50 best Liverpool players ever

Liverpool
(Image credit: Future)

Liverpool are one of the biggest clubs in the history of English football. 20 domestic titles, seven Champions League triumphs and countless other cups tell the story of a club who have been successful for decades. 

And with such success, the Reds have produced legend after legend in English football. High-octane, entertaining sides have been jam-packed with jewels of the sport, making household names of young boys from Merseyside and exciting overseas gems alike.

So who's the greatest to have ever enthralled the Kop? Let's roll through the list…

50-41

50. Steve Nicol 

Steve Nicol

(Image credit: Getty)

A stalwart of Liverpool’s glory years of the 1980s, the Scottish defender won five league titles, three FA Cups and the 1984 European Cup during 14 years at Anfield.

Nicol was ahead of his time in providing a goal threat from right-back, scoring 36 for the Reds in total, including a hat-trick against Newcastle in 1987. 

49. Xabi Alonso 

Xabi Alonso

(Image credit: Getty)

The Spanish playmaker was a key figure in the Miracle of Istanbul, scoring Liverpool’s equaliser to complete their Champions League final comeback against AC Milan from 3-0 down at half time to 3-3, before the Reds triumphed on penalties. 

The silky midfielder went on to win the FA Cup the following season, and also scored some of the most memorable goals in Liverpool’s long history thanks to outstanding ability from long range.

48. Steve McManaman

Steve McManaman Liverpool

(Image credit: PA)

A boyhood Everton fan, McManaman more than made up for his early allegiances with his performances on the pitch for Liverpool after coming through the youth ranks at Anfield.

The winger broke into the first team as a teenager in 1991/92, winning the FA Cup that season, and never looked back as he started to produce buckets of assists and a steady goal return.

A League Cup title followed in 1994/95, and McManaman had long established a reputation as one of England’s finest midfielders by the time he left for Real Madrid in 1999. 

47. James Milner

James Milner's Perfect XI

(Image credit: Getty Images)

He may not be the flashiest player in the world, but Milner’s importance to Liverpool’s revolution under Jurgen Klopp can’t be denied. 

His versatility, leadership and consistency mark him out, but the industrious midfielder also became the first player in Champions League history to provide nine assists in one season in 2018/19 as the Reds stormed to the final.  

A Premier League, Champions League and FIFA Club World Cup winner who even spent a season at left-back, it’s no wonder he’s often name-checked as one of the most underrated players in England. 

46. Tommy Lawrence 

Bill Shankly’s first-choice goalkeeper, Lawrence was the rock behind two league titles and one FA Cup during the 1960s.

He also boasted possibly one of the best nicknames in the club’s history, as he was affectionately dubbed ‘the Flying Pig’ by fans due to an agility that belied his 14 stone frame.

45. Albert Stubbins

One of Liverpool’s finest players of the immediate post-World War II period, Stubbins’ fame also earned him a place on the front cover of the Beatles’ ‘Sergeant Pepper’ album - where he was the only footballer to feature. 

After deciding on joining the Reds over Everton on the toss of a coin the striker’s decision paid off as he finished his debut season as the league’s joint-top scorer, firing in 24 goals to win the Anfield club their first league title in 24 years.

44. John Aldridge

John Aldridge

(Image credit: Getty)

Signed to fill the boots of Ian Rush, Aldridge stood up to that daunting task and is considered one of Liverpool’s best-ever goalscorers, despite spending only two-and-a-half seasons at the club. 

The boyhood Reds fan scored 26 goals in his first full season as Kenny Dalglish’s side won the 1987/88 title, forming one of the greatest attacking tridents in Liverpool history with John Barnes and Peter Beardsley. 

One sour note was a missed penalty in a shock FA Cup final defeat to Wimbledon that year, but he made up for it the following season by scoring in the cup final victory over rivals Everton.

43. Fernando Torres

Fernando Torres

(Image credit: Getty)

‘El Nino’ enjoyed the most prolific spell of his career at Anfield and settled immediately following his 2007 club record move from Atletico Madrid.

He became the first Liverpool player since Robbie Fowler 11 years earlier to hit 30 goals in a season for the club, and became the fastest player in Reds history to reach 50 league goals.

His 33-goal haul in all competitions 2007/08 was the most by a foreign player in a debut season in England, but Torres’ legacy on Merseyside was marred somewhat when he requested a transfer to domestic rivals Chelsea in January 2011. 

42. Steve McMahon

McMahon was Kenny Dalglish’s first Liverpool signing, and went on to become the midfield anchor behind three league titles and two FA Cups in the 1980s.

A strong passer and tackler with an eye for the occasional goal - most memorably a 30-yeard screamer against Manchester United - he earned high praise from Reds royalty in the form of Bob Paisley. 

“When Steve McMahon plays well, I always think that Liverpool will play well,” said the managerial great. 

41. Gerry Byrne

Gerry Byrne

(Image credit: Getty)

The hard-as-nails defender was a one-club man and a favourite of Bill Shankly, who first thrust him into the starting side, where he stayed for much of the 1960s and won two league titles.

Byrne famously broke his collarbone during the FA Cup final in 1965 after just three minutes but, with substitutions yet to be introduced, he battled on until the bitter end as the Reds lifted the famous trophy for the first time in 72 years by beating Leeds United.

40-31

40. Jimmy Case 

A combative midfielder with a fierce shot, Case was a fan favourite who played a key role in a glorious era for Liverpool. 

A four-time league winner, and three-time European champion who also boasted winners’ medals in the UEFA Cup and League Cup, Case is also fondly remembered for his powerful goals, particularly a superb strike against Manchester United in the 1977 FA Cup final. 

39. Michael Owen

Michael Owen, Liverpool

(Image credit: PA)

Few players have ever taken to senior football as quickly and devastatingly as Owen, who scored on his debut aged 17 and never looked back, eventually departing for Real Madrid in 2004 after eight years at Anfield with a ratio of a goal every two games. 

Owen memorably scored twice in the final seven minutes of the FA Cup final in 2001 to turn the game on its head and clinch the trophy, in the year that his 24-goal haul delivered an FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup treble for the Merseyside club.

That form earned Owen the Ballon d’Or, making him the first Liverpool player to win European football’s biggest individual prize, and the first English recipient since Kevin Keegan in 1979.

38. Sammy Lee

A Liverpool lad, Lee rose through the ranks at his hometown club to become a key player in a golden age for the Reds. 

The diminutive but strong midfielder won four league titles in five years between 1981 and 1986, as well as twice lifting the European Cup. 

37. John Toshack

John Toshack

(Image credit: Getty)

Bill Shankly brought Toshack to Anfield from Cardiff City for a then-club record £111,000 fee in 1970, and the striker soon struck up a partnership with Kevin Keegan that helped him win two league titles, the European Cup, the FA Cup and two UEFA Cups over eight years at the club. 

Keegan later explained that he “always knew Tosh was going to win the high balls…from then on it was just a question of me reading which way the ball was going to go”. 

That understanding and anticipation was perhaps most evident in the 1972-73 UEFA Cup final first leg, when two Toshack headers set up two Keegan goals for a 3-0 win that sent the Reds on course to a 3-2 aggregate victory over two legs. 

36. Roberto Firmino

FPL

(Image credit: PA Images)

The Brazilian is perhaps the least heralded member of a sensational Liverpool front three, along with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, that fired the club to Champions League and Premier League glory in successive years under Jurgen Klopp. 

But that doesn’t reduce his importance to the side, as Firmino played a critical role in those successes  with his goals, assists, work rate and energy, and Klopp has described the striker as the “engine” of his team. 

35. Jan Molby

Molby is described on Liverpool’s website as being “widely regarded as the finest passer of a football to ever pull on the red shirt”. 

That is high praise indeed, but no surprise for a man whose vision and creativity was behind three league titles for the club in the 1980s, as well as two FA Cup triumphs. 

The Dane was also prolific from the penalty spot, scoring 42 spot kicks for the club and missing just three, and he even netted a hat-trick of penalties against Coventry in 1986.

34. Jordan Henderson

Jordan Henderson

(Image credit: PA)

Henderson has captained Liverpool to domestic, European and global glory in the trophy-laden Jurgen Klopp years, marshaling a star-studded team from the centre of midfield with determination and style. 

The England international arrived at Anfield from Sunderland in 2011 and succeeded club legend Steven Gerrard as skipper four years later, but he has been equal to the task and now sits fourth in the club’s all-time appearance list, behind only Jamie Carragher, Gerrard and Sami Hyypia.

33. Bruce Grobbelaar

Bruce Grobbelaar

(Image credit: Getty)

The mustachioed goalkeeper is perhaps best known for the wobbly-leg routine that helped Liverpool beat Roma on penalties in the Italian capital to clinch the 1984 European Cup, but the Zimbabwean was a constant presence between the sticks throughout the 1980s at Anfield. 

Over 14 years at the club, Grobbelaar won six league titles, three FA Cups, three League Cups as well as that European crown, racking up 628 appearances. 

32. Trent Alexander-Arnold

Trent Alexander-Arnold

(Image credit: Getty)

It says a lot about Alexander-Arnold that he’s already considered among the best players to have ever played for Liverpool at the age of 23. 

But he’s achieved a lot already, playing a huge role in the Reds’ Premier League, Champions League and Club World Cup wins under Jurgen Klopp with buckets of assists and goals from right-back.

He holds the record number of assists for a defender in a single Premier League season with 13, and his appearance in the triumphant Champions League final against Tottenham in 2019 made him the youngest player, aged 22, to feature in back-to-back finals in the tournament. 

31. Ronnie Whelan

A stalwart of Liverpool’s hugely successful period in the 1980s, Whelan arrived at Anfield from his native Ireland in 1979 and had established himself as a regular within two years. 

The midfielder remained a key member of the side until the 1990s, and picked up six league winners’ medals, three FA Cups, three League Cups and the 1984 European Cup. 

30-21

30. Ray Kennedy

Ray Kennedy

(Image credit: Getty)

Bob Paisley moved Kennedy out of the forward line to the left side of midfield midway through the 1975/76 season, an inspired decision that transformed the former Arsenal striker’s time at the club.

He immediately excelled in the new role, quickly nailing down a regular starting spot as Liverpool began a run of five league title wins in seven years.

Kennedy also won three European Cups during an incredible period of success for the Reds, and his goal against Bayern Munich in the semi-finals of the 1981 edition proved to be decisive over two legs.

29. Andrew Robertson

best left backs

(Image credit: PA Images)

Robertson’s rise from playing part-time football with Queen’s Park in Scotland’s fourth tier to signing for Liverpool in the space of four years is well documented, but that doesn’t make it any less spectacular. 

The Scotland captain has excelled under Jurgen Klopp, providing a dynamism and attacking threat from left-back that few players in his position are capable of. 

The 28-year-old has been a key cog in the Reds machine that has won Premier League, Champions League and Club World Cup titles under Jurgen Klopp, and it’s only a matter of time before more honours follow. 

28. Mark Lawrenson

Mark Lawrenson

(Image credit: Getty)

Lawrenson cost Liverpool a club record fee of £900,000 when he signed from Brighton in 1981, but the defender proved to be worth every penny as he formed a formidable partnership with Alan Hansen. 

Lawrenson was fast, strong, and able to play in a variety of roles, but it was in the centre alongside Hansen that he excelled, winning five league titles, the FA Cup and the European Cup in seven seasons at Anfield.

27. Terry McDermott

McDermott’s creative and attacking abilities perfectly complemented his tough-tackling midfield partner Graeme Souness, and the England international scored some spectacular strikes during a trophy-littered eight-year spell at Anfield.

A three-time European and five-time English champion, McDermott was the first player ever to win the Football Writers’ and PFA player of the year awards in the same season in 1980, while his diving header in a 7-0 thumping of Tottenham in 1978 is considered one of the greatest Anfield goals ever. 

26. Ray Clemence

Ray Clemence

(Image credit: Getty)

Clemence’s performances between the sticks were a major feature of a golden era of success at Anfield. The agile and ever-reliable keeper cost the Reds just £18,000 from Scunthorpe in 1967, one of the greatest bargains they ever struck. 

Once he took the first-team gloves from Tommy Lawrence, Clemence helped Liverpool build a ferocious defensive unit that was behind three European Cups, two UEFA Cups and five league titles, with the goalkeeper providing incredible consistency by missing just six league games in 11 years. 

25. Alan Kennedy

Alan Kennedy

(Image credit: Getty)

Before Andy Robertson, there was Alan Kennedy. A marauding left-back who scored a series of crucial goals in Liverpool’s glittering run throughout the 1980s.

Kennedy joined the Reds from Newcastle in 1978, becoming the most expensive full-back in England at £330,000, brought in to fill a void in Bob Paisley’s squad. Paisley’s expectations were high, but it’s fair to say Kennedy exceeded them.

He scored the only goal in the 1981 European Cup final win over Real Madrid, and the decisive spot-kick in the triumph over Roma three years later.

In total, he won 11 major trophies with Liverpool, including five First Division titles, laying the blueprint for those attacking full-backs to follow.

24. Alisson

Alisson, Liverpool

(Image credit: Getty)

When Liverpool sanctioned an – at the time – world-record transfer fee for a goalkeeper to bring Alisson from Roma in 2018, they knew what they were doing.

Head of goalkeeping John Achterberg had tracked the Brazilian for five years, from his days at Internacional, and was convinced he could solve a long-term problem position.

After years of effectively making do between the sticks, Alisson was a fully formed fix; a commanding goalkeeper, agile and strong, dominant on his line and off it, with lightning reflexes and the ability to kickstart counter-attacks with his pinpoint delivery. At £65 million, Alisson was a bargain – particularly when compared to the goalkeeper who broke his transfer record just three weeks later: Kepa Arrizabalaga.

23. Tommy Smith

Tommy Smith was made for Liverpool. Born and raised around Anfield, as a youngster he joined the ground staff at the stadium before progressing through the schoolboy ranks as he impressed Bill Shankly.

The young Smith began as a striker, but established himself as a formidable presence at centre-back over a decorated 16-year spell with the first team that saw him transcend the evolution of the early 1960s to the late 1970s.

He was an unforgiving, fearless player who was a regular in the side for over a decade, including one season in 1970/71 that saw him make 61 appearances - overall, Smith played 638 times for his boyhood club, landing him eighth in the club’s all-time list.

As Bill Shankly aptly put it: “Tommy Smith wasn't born, he was quarried.”

22. Sami Hyypia

Sami Hyypia

(Image credit: Getty)

One of the all-time bargain signings in Liverpool’s history.

Sami Hyypia was recommended to chief executive Peter Robinson by the club’s official European cameraman - after extensive scouting, the Finn was plucked from Willem II for just £2.5 million.

He gave Gerard Houllier’s side the steel and finesse they required alongside the dogged Jamie Carragher, leading to a trophy treble in 2000/01, while he produced a king-making display against Juventus en route to Champions League success in 2005.

Hyypia wore the captain’s armband with distinction until it was graciously passed on to Steven Gerrard, and with 464 appearances over 10 years, he is one of only two overseas players in the club’s all-time top 20.

21. Steve Heighway

A legendary winger whose name is still sung on the Kop today, Steve Heighway was brought to Liverpool in his early 20s and made the transition from non-league to First Division seamlessly.

Heighway was blessed with blistering pace and the strength to shake off the robust challenges that hallmarked his era, and could both score and assist with an impressive frequency - of those to ply their trade in years gone, he would be arguably be one of the most suited to the modern game.

Later in his career he used his brain and instinct to shift into a more central role, which helped prolong a remarkable career that kept him at Anfield into his mid-30s and saw him win 11 major trophies.

He arrived at the club as a rarity, a university graduate, and that clearly aided him as he returned to Liverpool in 1989 to lead the academy, nurturing a generation that included Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher, Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen and Steve McManaman.

20-11

20. Ron Yeats

Ron Yeats

(Image credit: Getty)

As Bill Shankly plotted the pathway back to the First Division, he earmarked his fellow Scot as the man to build around in defence, telling journalists upon Ron Yeats’ unveiling: “Take a walk around my centre-half, gentlemen, he’s a colossus!”

When Yeats lined up alongside his new team-mates at Anfield, he resembled a giant, and as Shankly promised upon his arrival, he was in the top flight a year later.

A constant throughout the 1960s, Yeats was his generation’s Virgil van Dijk. A leader at the back; an immovable object who could dominant games with his sheer presence.

He would later serve the club as chief scout, spending 20 years in the role as he unearthed a number of key talents.

19. Phil Thompson

Phil Thompson

(Image credit: Getty)

A cultured defender who helped propel the role into a new era, Thompson was central to Liverpool’s success throughout the 1970s and into the 1980s.

The Kirkby native, who spent his childhood on the Kop, went on to lift the title as Liverpool captain, partnering a host of top-tier centre-backs as a valued lieutenant for Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley. Thompson was also a staple for England, with his graceful approach in defence leading to a stylistic shift from long balls to playing out from the back.

He went on to serve Liverpool in various backroom roles in the decades after his retirement, including stepping into the dugout when Gerard Houllier required emergency heart surgery in 2001.

18. Jamie Carragher

Jamie Carragher

(Image credit: PA)

Despite growing up an Everton supporter, Jamie Carragher has embodied Liverpool ever since his goalscoring full debut as a precocious full-back in 1996.

Carragher made a natural progression from the defensive flanks to his long-term role at centre-back, leading by example in defence as a no-nonsense, never-say-die figure.

He is second on Liverpool’s all-time appearances list, and though he won the treble under Gerard Houllier and fought through cramp to help drag Liverpool to Champions League success in Istanbul, his commitment deserved many more trophies.

Though never the most refined player, Carragher was, for an extended period, a truly world-class centre-back who gave everything for the club he now calls his own.

17. Robbie Fowler

Robbie Fowler, Liverpool

(Image credit: Getty)

One of the best finishers to ever represent Liverpool, Robbie Fowler could score from anywhere, with his left foot, his right foot or his head, honing his natural poacher’s instinct to become a fearsome No. 9.

Fowler was certainly more than the sum of his goals, but they are what have defined his career.

He was ruthless in the box, and that he came through the academy made him an even more popular figure among fans.

16. Sadio Mané

Liverpool forward Sadio Mane celebrating

(Image credit: Getty)

Incredibly, given what he has gone on to achieve, the reception upon Sadio Mané’s move to Liverpool from Southampton was not universally positive.

But the Senegalese has been central to the club’s success under Jurgen Klopp: a tenacious, phenomenally gifted forward who has excelled in a variety of positions with an unshakable will to win.

His unassuming character has ensured he remains underrated by many, but Mané is undoubtedly one of the best players to represent Liverpool and a key cog in the club’s revival.

15. Emlyn Hughes

Emlyn Hughes

(Image credit: Getty)

Emlyn Hughes was a prototypical top-flight footballer, one whose dedication and enthusiasm matched his unparalleled talent at the time.

Bill Shankly was so convinced he could build his side around the Blackpool defender that he called him every day until his eventual move to Anfield in 1967.

Hughes, who became affectionally known as ‘Crazy Horse’, gave everything for Liverpool and led the club as captain throughout a dominant era.

14. Ian St John

Ian St John

(Image credit: Getty)

Along with Ron Yeats, the relentless Ian St John was heralded by Bill Shankly as “the beginning of Liverpool,” with the legendary manager considering the pair as his greatest signings.

That is quite the testimony, and St John earned it as a transformational presence up front for Liverpool.

His goals – 118 in 425 games – helped lead the Reds to glory throughout the 1960s, including their first-ever FA Cup with an extra-time header to beat Leeds in front of 100,000 fans at Wembley in 1965.

13. Alan Hansen

Alan Hansen

(Image credit: Getty)

Alan Hansen may be better known to fans of a certain vintage as the surly Scot on the Match of the Day sofa, but he is remembered on Merseyside as a trailblazing centre-back who helped lift Liverpool to sustained success.

He was the fulcrum of Liverpool’s defence for over a decade, with his ability to bring the ball out from the back with staggering ease giving the Reds another edge.

His effortless style is a touchstone for the modern defender, able to preside over great lengths of the pitch with strength, composure and cool.

12. Ian Callaghan

Ian Callaghan

(Image credit: Getty)

With 857 appearances for Liverpool over 19 seasons, Ian Callaghan holds a Liverpool record that will almost certainly never be broken.

The diminutive winger succeeded an icon in Billy Liddell, and convinced Bill Shankly as the “model professional,” before shifting into a new role to lend his industry in the middle of the park.

“If there were 11 Callaghans at Anfield there would never be any need to put up a team sheet,” Shankly once said. “You could stake your life on Ian.”

11. Billy Liddell

Billy Liddell

(Image credit: Getty)

Billy Liddell was born in Scotland but spent his entire professional career with Liverpool, spanning 23 years interrupted by service as navigator for the RAF during the Second World War.

Known as a bullishly strong forward, Liddell played most often on the left wing but was also capable of playing on the right and up front; a boundless source of goals who only improved as the decades went on.

Liddell was one of the most popular players in football, and his imprint on Liverpool weighed so heavily that the club became affectionally known as ‘Liddellpool’.

10-1

10. Kevin Keegan

Kevin Keegan

(Image credit: Getty)

The original Anfield pinup? Kevin Keegan scored 12 minutes into his Liverpool debut, as a 20-year-old striker for Bill Shankly, and barely stopped over six outstanding seasons.

His skill was dazzling and he always seemed at least a step ahead of the defenders in front of him, intertwining with the likes of John Toshack, Steve Heighway and Ray Kennedy as the exciting fulcrum of Shankly’s attack.

Keegan netted exactly 100 times during his spell with the Reds, becoming an icon in the No. 7 shirt before making the bold step to leave England for Hamburg, where he twice won the Ballon d’Or.

No Englishman won that prize again until Michael Owen in 2001, with Keegan’s mesmeric talents forged on Merseyside.

9. Graeme Souness

Graeme Souness

(Image credit: Getty)

Far removed from the curmudgeon in the Sky Sports studio, as a player, Graeme Souness was the complete midfielder - and a talisman who helped lead Liverpool to glory.

Brought in soon after Kenny Dalglish and Alan Hansen, Souness was part of the regeneration of Bill Shankly’s inaugural European Cup-winning side, and he soon put his stamp on the Scot’s midfield.

While he may be renowned for his all-action, aggressive approach, Souness was also an outstanding passer, a nimble dribbler and a fantastic striker of the ball who netted 55 times in 359 games.

Souness dominated a Roma midfield comprised of Toninho Cerezo and Falcao in his final game for Liverpool, signing off in trademark fashion as he lifted a fourth European Cup.

8. Roger Hunt

Roger Hunt

(Image credit: Getty)

“To Liverpool supporters it is ‘Sir Roger’, as he was christened by the Kop all those years ago,” Jamie Carragher said of the late Roger Hunt in 2021, “and one of the guys who made Liverpool what it is today.”

Part of the England squad to reach immortality at the 1966 World Cup, Hunt was a deadly finisher who remains second in Liverpool’s all-time goalscorers list, with 285 in just 492 appearances.

His club-record 244 goals in the league will unlikely never be surpassed, with the striker signed from Stockton Heath playing a crucial role in the club’s rise from Second Division to top-flight glory.

The Kop adored him, and rightly so. Hunt’s achievements have gone down in history.

7. Virgil van Dijk

Liverpool's Harvey Elliott, Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah | Liverpool v Chelsea live stream

(Image credit: Getty Images)

When considering Virgil van Dijk’s impact on modern-day Liverpool, he is often held up against the likes of Ron Yeats and Alan Hansen in the debate over the club’s best-ever centre-back.

Make no mistake, Van Dijk is the best and most complete defender to ever play for the Reds.

His club-record £75 million transfer from Southampton is one of the most influential of Jurgen Klopp’s reign, with the Dutchman having a transformative and almost immediate effect on the club's defensive fortunes.

Van Dijk can do it all, and often does so with a nonchalance that suggests there is even more in his locker than he gives away. A Rolls Royce if ever there was one.

6. Ian Rush

Ian Rush

(Image credit: Getty)

A ridiculously prolific striker, Ian Rush is the benchmark for Liverpool forwards not only for his record tally of 346 goals, but also his ceaseless effort in defending from the front.

The Welshman served the club throughout the 1980s and for much of the 1990s - albeit sandwiching a brief and ill-fated stint at Juventus - and set the tone with his quality in leading the line.

Rush made finishing look easy, breaking the 30-goal mark five times in his first six full seasons with Liverpool - including twice scoring 40 or more.

And though his powers certainly faded in the twilight of his career in the Premier League era, Rush was still a valuable player for the club he came to adore.

5. John Barnes

John Barnes

(Image credit: Getty)

For a generation of football fans, John Barnes was their inspiration, a sublime winger who swapped Watford for Liverpool in 1987 and became an icon.

On the ball, Barnes was truly untouchable, his dribbling ability unparalleled, and as one of the first high-profile black players in the English top-flight he rose above the abuse that sadly rained from the stands.

In his later years, he presided over a deeper role in midfield, captaining the side through the mid-1990s as he utilised his football brain to dictate play. 

4. Luis Suarez

Luis Suarez, Liverpool

(Image credit: Getty)

For many supporters and teammates alike, Luis Suarez is the most talented footballer to ever play for Liverpool.

The Uruguayan bowled up at Anfield alongside Andy Carroll, at the end of a dramatic January transfer window in 2011, and from his very first training session convinced the likes of Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher of his world-class ability.

It was in his second full season with Liverpool that Suarez truly came alive, and the following campaign in 2013/14 he almost steered Brendan Rodgers’ side to the title with his untouchable goalscoring streak.

A tenacious, unrelenting forward who always seemed to come out on top in 50-50s and one-on-ones, Suarez was a unique player who captured the hearts of the Kop. If only he had stayed longer.

3. Mohamed Salah

Mohamed Salah

(Image credit: Getty)

Mohamed Salah is a different breed of footballer; a truly elite sportsman who stands alongside the very best in terms of dedication to his craft.

Having seen his hopes of joining Liverpool back in 2014 dashed in favour of a disastrous move to Chelsea, the Egyptian harnessed that disappointment and tore through Serie A before returning, jubilant, to Anfield.

Salah has never scored fewer than 23 goals in a single season for the Reds, twice netting more than 30 and, in his incredible maiden campaign on Merseyside, scoring 44 times in 52 games.

He is a goal machine beloved by the fans and has already broken into the club’s all-time top 10. If he is given the opportunity with an extended stay, Salah could realistically end his career in the top three.

2. Steven Gerrard

Steven Gerrard

(Image credit: Getty)

There is a good argument for Steven Gerrard being Liverpool’s greatest ever player. Quite simply, if you took Gerrard out of the Liverpool side during his era, Liverpool would have been mid-table. The 2005 Champions League simply wouldn’t have happened.

Gerrard almost single-handedly dragged Liverpool through some tough times during the 2000s, acting like a real life Roy of the Rovers, scoring sensational 30-yard volleys in stoppage time, inspiring some mediocre players around him, and keeping Liverpool competitive.

He is still the only player to have scored in a League Cup final, FA Cup final, UEFA Cup final and Champions League final. He’s in that rare club of having a FA Cup final named after him following the 2006 last-minute equaliser from 40 yards against West Ham.

Perhaps, had Gerrard been able to have completed his trophy set with a league title, he’d be giving the number one spot in this list an even bigger challenge.

1. Kenny Dalglish

Kenny Dalglish

(Image credit: Getty)

To a certain generation of Liverpool fan, ‘King’ Kenny Dalglish will always be their number one. And rightly so.

Brought in to replace the outgoing King Kevin (Keegan), Dalglish ended his first season at Anfield by scoring the winning goal in the 1978 European Cup final - and the rest, as they say, is history.

Six league titles in the next eight seasons followed, along with another two European Cups, as Dalglish led Liverpool to trophy domination in England and Europe. The latter of those titles was achieved as a 35-year-old player-manager, scoring the winner at Stamford Bridge and leading the Reds to a league and FA Cup double.

Now a Sir, Dalglish did it all on the pitch and off it. His character in the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster will never be forgotten by the families on Merseyside, with Dalglish and his wife, Marina, attending dozens of funerals, including four in one day.

“When Kenny shines, the whole team is illuminated,” Bob Paisley eloquently once put it. And boy, did King Kenny shine for Liverpool. 

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1