Liverpool Transfers: 5 Best Players the Reds Sold Too Soon
Plenty of great players have played for Liverpool throughout the years but a few left the club too soon.
It's always a risky call when managers and executives decide it's okay to let a player leave.
It didn't work for Liverpool with these players.
Whether they were deemed surplus to requirements or allowed to leave because they wanted to, these players left Anfield behind.
Legends like Ian Rush and Robbie Fowler, who came back for second spells, are not included in this list. Even Michael Owen, who didn't perform at the same level after leaving the club, didn't make the cut.
Here are five players the Reds sold too soon.
05. Dirk Kuyt
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Considering his current form Dirk Kuyt is certainly worthy of being on this list.
The Dutchman may not be as aesthetically pleasing as his countrymen but endeared himself to Liverpool fans during his time with the Reds.
His goal tally reached double digits in every season but one and he showcased a fantastic work-rate for the team.
Kuyt already has 13 strikes for his new club Fenerbache who will take part in the knockout rounds of the Europa League.
Who knows? Maybe Fenerbache and Liverpool will meet at some point in the tournament.
If Kuyt performs as he has been so far the Reds may well wish they hadn't sold him.
04. Javier Mascherano
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Liverpool may not have had much of a choice when it came to selling Javier Mascherano but they really should've tried to hold onto him.
Mascherano reportedly wanted to leave the club in 2010 and got his wish with a move to Barcelona. (via BBC)
The Argentinian has gone on to put in some great performances for the Spanish side and has won six trophies in the process.
He's added to his reputation as a tough-tackling midfielder with some solid performances in the centre of defense as well.
While Lucas Leiva has come in and provided the club with a solid defensive midfield presence, the club could certainly have used Mascherano's services during the last few seasons.
03. Kevin Keegan
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Kevin Keegan continued his solid performances after leaving Liverpool for Hamburg in the 1977/78 season.
Though Liverpool continued their winning ways after he left, Keegan provided valuable contributions at his new clubs and gained individual honors as a result.
After leaving Merseyside, Keegan led Hamburg to its first Bundesliga title in 19 years and almost helped the club to European glory as well.
He picked up the Ballon d'Or twice during his time at Hamburg, though the first time came mainly due to his work with Liverpool in the previous season.
Keegan went on to play well individually for Southampton and then Newcastle too.
He picked up the PFA Players' Player of the Year with Southampton and helped Newcastle to promotion before his retirement.
All these achievements showed that Keegan still had plenty to offer and may have helped Liverpool continue their dominance during the late 70's and early 80's.
02. Steve McManaman
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Steve McManaman wasn't really sold by Liverpool but considering his performances after leaving the club he's a good choice for this list.
He joined Real Madrid at the beginning of the 1999/2000 season and went on to have a pretty successful four-season stint.
McManaman made over 150 appearances for Madrid during his time at the club and made some extremely important contributions in the process.
In all, McManaman picked up eight trophies during his time at the Bernabeu.
Despite the constant influx of talents such as Luis Figo and Zinedine Zidane, McManaman's workrate and form made him a fan-favourite.
Club managers and then president Florentino Perez tried to push the Englishman out of the club but his form, the fans and the backing of his teammates enabled him to stay and have success.
01. Xabi Alonso
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Xabi Alonso is one of the most obvious choices for this list.
Alonso had to go through a summer of transfer rumours in 2008 before finally being sent to Real Madrid in the summer of 2009.
The Spaniard was an integral part of the team during his five seasons at the club.
His passing skills were unsurpassed and he controlled the game while Steven Gerrard provided energy and thrust for the side.
The Reds have been unable to replace Alonso's superb passing and positional play and it shows.
Liverpool won four trophies during his time at the club and it's interesting to note that, until the club's Capital One Cup triumph in 2012, they had not come close to silverware.
The player himself has gone on to play integral roles for Real Madrid and the Spanish national team while still being regarded as one of the best in his position.