Liverpool’s obscurest, best signing ever ? - Maybe a poll

Limiescouse

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There's a difference between not having heard of a player and him being obscure.

Molby had won a title for Ajax and was established in a very good Danish side by the time we bought him. Hendo was an established Prem player who'd represented England at the youth levels. Xabi was the Captain of a Sociedad side challenging for the La Liga, and who had been linked to Utd for a couple of years before we got him. Because of his pedigree (his dad won La Liga numerous times) he was a player who people had been watching since he was a child. Rush was a hot target requiring us to pay a British transfer record for a teenager to get him. Mascherano was a legit superstar already, with the only odity being why someone that well regarded for signed for shitty West Ham. He had handpicked by Maradona at 17 to be the future of Argentinian football and fast tracked into their side. He'd been in the Argentina team for half a career by the time we bought him, playing key a key role in Copas and world cups. I think he was named Argentina's best player in one of the Copas.

We signed a fair few Nordic lads Id never heard of in the 90s and 00s. So while I;d never heard of Sami, it was clearly a pipeline we were pursuing. For me the biggest WTF was Rosenthal. We had really good players already, he came from no where with zero expectations from the fans and still contributed.
 

nobluff

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There's a difference between not having heard of a player and him being obscure.

Molby had won a title for Ajax and was established in a very good Danish side by the time we bought him. Hendo was an established Prem player who'd represented England at the youth levels. Xabi was the Captain of a Sociedad side challenging for the La Liga, and who had been linked to Utd for a couple of years before we got him. Because of his pedigree (his dad won La Liga numerous times) he was a player who people had been watching since he was a child. Rush was a hot target requiring us to pay a British transfer record for a teenager to get him. Mascherano was a legit superstar already, with the only odity being why someone that well regarded for signed for shitty West Ham. He had handpicked by Maradona at 17 to be the future of Argentinian football and fast tracked into their side. He'd been in the Argentina team for half a career by the time we bought him, playing key a key role in Copas and world cups. I think he was named Argentina's best player in one of the Copas.

We signed a fair few Nordic lads Id never heard of in the 90s and 00s. So while I;d never heard of Sami, it was clearly a pipeline we were pursuing. For me the biggest WTF was Rosenthal. We had really good players already, he came from no where with zero expectations from the fans and still contributed.
Rosenthal, that's a good shout. I guessed there might be a few like Molby that I thought about, but just didnt have enough knowledge to know if they were considered obscure.
 

Limiescouse

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Rosenthal, that's a good shout. I guessed there might be a few like Molby that I thought about, but just didnt have enough knowledge to know if they were considered obscure.
I guess some of the others from that team were pretty obscure. Home Farm had produced a few top players, but it was still a punt to take a 17 year old league of Ireland player in Whealan, but I know it took him a while to break into the side so Im not sure he was any more of a punt than any take you on a kid originally picked for a youth/reserves.

Brucie seems a reasonable shout given he was bought from essentially a semi pro league, but it was his time on loan at Crewe that led us to buy him, so it was far more in line with the sorts of lower league purchases that were common in that era.
 

Zinedine Biscan

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People widely knew about Xabi Alonso before he joined in 2004? A 22yr old playing for a relatively small team that finished 15th in La Liga?

If they did, I wasn't among them.
Yup.

Also surprised some people knew who Hendo was. Even as someone playing a shit-ton of FM at the time the first time I heard his name is when we started being linked.
 

Limiescouse

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Yup.

Also surprised some people knew who Hendo was. Even as someone playing a shit-ton of FM at the time the first time I heard his name is when we started being linked.
Xabi was well known. He'd been made captain of the Sociedad side very young and had helped turn them into title challengers for the first time in 20 years, something that hadnt happened since his dad played for them. He'd been been playing for Spain for 2 years before we signed him, and played in the Euros for them that summer. During that two year period both Utd and Real had made efforts to sign him, and I remember at the time we signed him my over riding reaction was not one of happiness that we got him, but relief that Utd hadnt, such was my concern over how certain he was to fix the midfield problems that had become so apparent in them at that time.

As for Hendo, he was already a full international when we bought him, albeit only playing the one game.
 
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Zinedine Biscan

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Xabi was well known. He'd been made captain of the Sociedad side very young and had helped turn them into title challengers for the first time in 20 years, something that hadnt happened since his dad played for them. He'd been been playing for Spain for 2 years before we signed him, and played in the Euros for them that summer. During that two year period both Utd and Real had made efforts to sign him, and I remember at the time we signed him my over riding reaction was not one of happiness that we got him, but that Utd hadnt, such was my concern over how certain he was to fix the midfield problems that had become so apparent in them at that time.

As for Hendo, he was already a full international when we bought him, albeit only playing the one game.
And Sami already had 20+ caps when we bought him. I think you're setting the bar a little high.
 

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I could have told you who Henderson played for but that's about it. I think I might have known he was highly regarded. Similar with Robertson, given they both played for clubs in the PL. Alonso though, until we were linked with him I had no idea who he was, what team he played for, what position etc.
 

Limiescouse

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And Sami already had 20+ caps when we bought him. I think you're setting the bar a little high.
Sorry, I dont think it is a remotely high bar to refer to full internationals of premier international sides as "obscure" transfer targets.
 

Zinedine Biscan

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Sorry, I dont think it is a remotely high bar to refer to full internationals of premier international sides as "obscure" transfer targets.
Lol, one cap in a friendly, surprised he didn't make the cover of that year's FIFA :rolleyes:
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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Henderson was being chased by us and United at the very least he was one of the top young players in the Premier League at the time. Not sure he could be considered an obscure signing.
 

legalalien

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I don't see any mentionof some of the players bought by Shankly from the lower leagues who were unheard before we bought them.
How about Clemence, Keegan and Toshack.
 

Zinedine Biscan

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Henderson was being chased by us and United at the very least he was one of the top young players in the Premier League at the time. Not sure he could be considered an obscure signing.
Thing is, I don't think it's possible in the modern day to have a truly obscure bolt from the blue. Too much football is too freely available, and you only have to look at some of the names being bandied around in the who would you buy thread to see hidden gems are basically a thing of the past. Hendo, playing semi-regularly for an unglamorous club fighting relegation was certainly not on my radar.

But while Sami was really obscure at the time, back then the internet wasn't widely available, UK papers didn't report on foreign leagues and that was the only way most of us heard about transfer stuff. Today, you can guarantee in the WWYB thread there'd already be at least one person trumpeting his name and multiple Youtube compilations.

I'd posit Lucas as well as someone I had no idea about prior to his signing, but no doubt there'd be some guy coming in and saying 'but he captained the Brazil U20s South American Youth Championship, everyone knew about him'... :LOL:
 

Kopstar

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I don't see any mentionof some of the players bought by Shankly from the lower leagues who were unheard before we bought them.
How about Clemence, Keegan and Toshack.
A couple of those came from Scunthorpe, no? ;)
 

rab

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Knew nothing of Coutinho before he signed and was underwhelmed to learn he was mostly sat on Inter's bench.

Paid £8m, had some great performances from him and then when we sold him he paid for what have turned out to be the best goalkeeper and best centre back in the world.

In an a roundabout way, his purchase was the catalyst for where we are today.
 
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Danny_

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People widely knew about Xabi Alonso before he joined in 2004? A 22yr old playing for a relatively small team that finished 15th in La Liga?

If they did, I wasn't among them.
We paid 10m for him I think which is the equivalent of about 40 m nowadays. You don't pay 10m for an unknown player. Everyone was raving about him before we signed him.
 

Danny_

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Rosenthal, that's a good shout. I guessed there might be a few like Molby that I thought about, but just didn't have enough knowledge to know if they were considered obscure.
He wasn't very good though, was he? On his day, he could dribble past players but other than that, he didn't have much. When I saw him first, I thought that this guy is going to be amazing but then, it never happened for him. I don't know why.
 
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Red_Jedi

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In recent times, it’s Robbo and Coutinho for me.

No expectations, no big fees. Amazing surprises.

Coutinho at his best was world class - and we got a fee to match.

Robbo - with his “nobody wants a Robertson shirt” says it all about our world class left back.

Truth is, Klopp has vastly improved every single player he’s worked with. His track record with us and Dortmund is just phenomenal.

And I think Klopp gets a buzz out of unearthing a gem. He probably would like to see some of our reserves come through Rather then go buy messi!

Before that, I’d go with Sami. Who was he? One of our best defenders. Would have worked under Klopp too.

I also thought crouch was a great signing - not only did he score a few for us, but as soon as we signed him, our defence improved greatly too - you could see he had an impact in training and got our defence tightened too.
 

jgw_geneseo

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Thing is, I don't think it's possible in the modern day to have a truly obscure bolt from the blue. Too much football is too freely available, and you only have to look at some of the names being bandied around in the who would you buy thread to see hidden gems are basically a thing of the past. Hendo, playing semi-regularly for an unglamorous club fighting relegation was certainly not on my radar.

But while Sami was really obscure at the time, back then the internet wasn't widely available, UK papers didn't report on foreign leagues and that was the only way most of us heard about transfer stuff. Today, you can guarantee in the WWYB thread there'd already be at least one person trumpeting his name and multiple Youtube compilations.

I'd posit Lucas as well as someone I had no idea about prior to his signing, but no doubt there'd be some guy coming in and saying 'but he captained the Brazil U20s South American Youth Championship, everyone knew about him'... :LOL:
How about Gomez? 2 mil from Charlton over the summer, and started the season as our LB!

That was a bit of a shock.
 

AussieLad

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My Aussie bias - Craig Johnston.

Not a bad LFC career after Jack Charlton said he was the worst footballer he had ever seen!
He was a key player for Middlesborough for a while before we signed him, so not sure he was that obscure
 

ptt

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I could have told you who Henderson played for but that's about it. I think I might have known he was highly regarded. Similar with Robertson, given they both played for clubs in the PL. Alonso though, until we were linked with him I had no idea who he was, what team he played for, what position etc.
Could that be because Alonso didn’t play in our league?
 

Flobs

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Henderson or Crouchy not because they were unknown at the time just because thay were/are inspirationally brilliant (even Gini agrees with me about Henderson. ;))
 

NZred

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Henchoz was great alongside big Sami for a couple years. Someone that far exceeded expectations is Milner, dude has been unreal.