Carragher: Mistake not to sign Anelka

Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has admitted the Reds made a mistake by not signing Chelsea striker Nicolas Anelka permanently in 2002.

The 30-year-old former Arsenal and Real Madrid forward joined the Merseysiders on loan from Paris-Saint Germain for a six-month spell in January 2002, scoring four league goals in 20 appearances for Gerard Houllier's side.

However, come the summer the French boss decided against making the striker's move to Anfield permanent for £12 million, and instead splashed £10 million on Senegal striker El Hadji Diouf.

The decision has ultimately back-fired on Liverpool, with Anelka going on to score prolifically for Manchester City, Fenerbahce, Bolton Wanderers and Chelsea, picking up the Premier League Golden Boot in 2008/09 and netting the opener in the side's recent meeting at Stamford Bridge.

And Liverpool vice-captain Carragher has confessed that the decision was certainly not one of the club's greatest.

"I think it's a bit strong to say it was one of the worst decisions ever, but it's fair to say it was a mistake," he said.

"You look at Anelka now, he was top scorer in the Premier League last season.

"It's in the past now, but it was probably something that never went our way."

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