It’s been a while since we’ve seen Luis Suarez on the pitch.
It’s an unwanted first biting incident for the Reds, but it’s certainly not the first case of pure, unbridled passion for Liverpool Football Club.
Here are the 10 most passionate players in Liverpool history—Luis Suarez included.
First, the man of the moment himself.
Those who see Luis Suarez work his socks off to chase the ball when it is not in his possession, celebrate when he scores a goal and scowl when he doesn’t get his way might be used to it, but his sheer desire to win still impresses, even if it is controversial.
For us, his passion was best displayed during the ultimately failed comeback against Zenit St. Petersburg in the Europa League just a few months ago: His goals so nearly sent Liverpool through to the last 16, and his celebrations told the story.
Suarez’s most famous predecessor in the No. 7 shirt, Kenny Dalglish, doesn’t fare too badly either.
As a player—one of the best ever to have worn the Red shirt—Dalglish never failed to conjure his signature beaming grin whenever he scored, and the number of trophies he won while leading the Liverpool attack ensured that he enjoyed great moments at Anfield.
As a manager, his passion for Liverpool still shone through during a testy second stint in charge. His iconic celebrations on the touchline will forever be remembered by Reds fans even now.
Anyone who has heard John Aldridge commentate on a Liverpool game these days will not dispute Aldo’s inclusion on this list.
Those who had the privilege of watching him do the business up front in a Red shirt and his celebrations will know that Aldridge’s passion for the Liverpool cause is up there with the greats, just as his goalscoring was.
He still continues with his outspoken views on all things Liverpool with his media work.
Kevin Keegan, one of Liverpool’s best ever players, had this to say about playing for the Reds (via lfchistory.net):
The only thing I fear is missing an open goal in front of the Kop. I would die if that were to happen. When they start singing “You’ll Never Walk Alone” my eyes start to water. There have been times when I’ve actually been crying while I’ve been playing.
Passion at its finest.
When it comes to midfield legends, Steven Gerrard belongs right at the top of the list.
The current captain might be quiet off the pitch and reserved in his media obligations, but his passion is there for all to see when he is on the pitch.
If his legendary celebration after his header against AC Milan in the 2005 Champions League final wasn’t enough, take a look at Gerrard’s highlight reel against Everton—tackles, red cards and goals alike.
In the most exciting Liverpool team to grace Anfield for the best part of 20 years, Javier Mascherano played behind Gerrard in a famous midfield crafted by Rafa Benitez.
And Mascherano was famously passionate.
His all-energy, terrier-like approach and uncompromising tackling ran the Reds midfield. His memorable celebration after his first league goal against Reading in 2008 and famous outburst against Manchester United, which came eight days later, will live long in the memory.
No discussion on defensive midfielders at Anfield can ever be complete without Graeme Souness, and unsurprisingly, he makes our “most passionate” list as well.
There were the long-range thunderbolts. There were the unyielding tackles. There was even the high-profile dispute with Phil Thompson on the Liverpool captaincy, which Souness was given by Bob Paisley at the expense of Thompson.
But most of all, there was the revelation after his last appearance for Liverpool, in the European Cup against Roma (via lfchistory.net):
I went berserk. For the first time I wept tears of joy and I was alternately laughing and crying along with a few other professionals and we launched into our famous victory celebration song as we lined up for a team picture.
Any player named the Anfield Iron would have an element of steeliness in him, and Tommy Smith most definitely deserves his place on this list.
In a now famous episode, Smith took a bandage off Liverpool Football Club’s knee and continued playing through an injury.
But it was through his no-nonsense tackling that he earns this reputation (via lfchistory.net):
The other tackles [besides breaking a leg in youth football] I put in were for the ball and if that meant hurting people in the process, well, so be it. It means next time I went in for the ball, he wasn’t there. I’d warned him. It was football. It was a game for men, not kids.
Emlyn Hughes goes one further than Smith: Hughes carried the nickname “Crazy Horse,” and carried it in style.
His infectious smile would be on display whenever silverware was in hand, but equally, devastation would be plastered across his face whenever it was a loser’s medal at the end a failed final.
And just like another fiery former Red, Craig Bellamy, Hughes was infamous for arguing with referees.
If Hughes was known for berating referees, Jamie Carragher should be famous for berating everyone on his pitch.
After all, the voice of the fearless in-game organizer and leader of men has boomed across pitches up and down the country and across Europe.
Now that the vice-captain is set to bring down the curtain on his illustrious Liverpool career, perhaps his passion is best illustrated in context: In his testimonial match, Carragher seized an opportunity to take a penalty on behalf of Everton.
He celebrated, and was then substituted to a standing ovation from the red half. A true Liverpudlian.