Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has claimed that the club would have won the Premier League title had Luis Suarez rejected a £75 million move to Barcelona and remained at Anfield.
When Barcelona come calling it is hard to stand in the way of any player and Suarez was undoubtedly one of the greatest players in Liverpool’s illustrious history. The £23 million signing had one of the finest seasons of his career in 2013/14, scoring 31 goals in 33 Premier League games to spearhead Liverpool’s title challenge alongside Daniel Sturridge.
The Uruguayan claimed the Golden Boot that season but Liverpool’s title challenge was in tatters when they lost 2-0 at home to Chelsea and then drew 3-3 away to Crystal Palace. Suarez departed for Barcelona that summer and went on to help Barca clinch the Champions League, La Liga and the Copa del Rey during his first season in Spain and has gone on to take his game to the next level and affirm his status as the greatest striker in the world.
Gerrard told BT Sport: "There's so many good teams in the Premier League but he would have given Liverpool a better chance [had he stayed.]”
“He was an absolute dream to play with. He was always on the move so that you could pick him out. He is just a phenomenal footballer. He's gone to another level since he moved to Barcelona with his goal and assist return."
Following Gerrard’s claim, Football Ticket Pad has gone on to pick out five more players who Liverpool may wish had stayed at the club longer in order to secure their sought after Premier League title for the first time since 1990:
Fernando Torres: This is a strike partnership that every Liverpool fan wanted to see when Suarez signed. However, Torres left on deadline day in summer 2011 and the pair never had the chance to play together for Liverpool. Torres was idolised by The Kop during his three years on Merseyside, however the Anfield faithful soon has another prodigal son to worship in the shape of Suarez. The 32 year-old endured torrid spells at Chelsea and AC Milan, but he is now scoring goals back at his boyhood club, Atletico Madrid in La Liga.
Pepe Reina: One of the clubs greatest goalkeepers, Reina became a fan favourite at Anfield. He went on to make almost 300 appearances for the club in his nine seasons smashing numerous records along the way, including the Premier League Golden Glove in his first three seasons at the club. Much has been documented on Liverpool’s current goalkeeper situation with question marks remaining over Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius. Who knows where Liverpool would be if they still had Pepe!
Xabi Alonso: The 35 year-old is set to retire at the end of the season when his contract expires at Bayern Munich and he established one of the finest central midfield partnerships alongside Steven Gerrard during his five years at the club. He has continued to play at the top level since departing from The Reds in 2009 and there is no doubt he could have helped the club win more titles had he remained at the club to add to his 143 appearances. Alonso went on to play for Real Madrid and Bayern Munich and remains one of the finest passers in Europe.
Luis Garcia: The little Spaniard has a legendary status on Merseyside and was very much a player who performed in the big occasions. He may not have helped them win a Premier League title, but he could certainly have been a great player to still have in the ranks. Despite playing less than three seasons, Garcia made 121 appearances and scored 30 goals before an knee injury brought his Liverpool career to an abrupt end before being sold the following summer to Atletico Madrid.
Javier Mascherano: The Argentine holding midfielder has gone on to become a world-class player at Barcelona and it was very much a case of wrong place, wrong time for Mascherano. He played 139 times for Liverpool in three years but the club was in turmoil. Rafael Benitez has left and Tom Hicks and George Gillett were running the club into the ground. If it was a different time, Mascherano had all the tools to become a true great and play at Anfield for many years. He is a player still missed today.
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