With a new decade nearly upon us it is time to take stock and reflect, and here we rank the top 10 players for Liverpool since the turn of 2010.
Since the turn of the decade, the Reds have experienced a myriad of highs and lows: from Roy Hodgson’s miserable tenure to Jurgen Klopp’s revolution and the club’s sixth European crown.
Within that time five managers have held the reigns and overseen a plethora of players ply their trade at Anfield, with varying degrees of success.
With various aspects of one’s game appreciated differently, this list will surely be a cause for debate, but here are our top 10 players for the Reds in the 2010s.
While his time at the club has been short, his influence has been far-reaching and has helped solve a problem position for the Reds which held the club back for far too long.
He sneaks his way into the list having proven instrumental in the title race and in the run to Liverpool’s Champions League success in his debut season, keeping an incredible total of 27 clean sheets.
One of the last pieces of the jigsaw needed to complete Liverpool’s spine and makes the difficult things look simple.
9. Daniel Sturridge
Sturridge is the longest-serving player in this list for the Reds throughout the 2010s and rightfully deserves his spot for 2013/14 alone.
His part in the ‘SAS’ pairing with Luis Suarez lit up the Premier League, where his natural finishing ability took centre stage and left many in awe – he ended his first full season with an impressive tally of 25 goals.
There was no questioning his ability and he was unplayable on his day, but injury would rob him of his prime years and with it the chance to take the leading role in Liverpool’s forward line.
He deserved to end his time on a high and he did just that with a European winner’s medal.
8. Philippe Coutinho
The Brazilian arrived on the cusp of Liverpool’s run at the title under Brendan Rodgers and went on to flourish alongside a potent attacking trident, before quickly landing the title of the Reds’ best player during the club’s period of transition.
He was nicknamed the ‘magician’ for good reason, with an eye for the spectacular and the skills to match.
Coutinho racked up 201 appearances, scored 54 goals and set up a further 45.
While his departure left a bitter taste, he was a shrewd investment as he went from an £8.5 million signing in 2013 to the club’s biggest sale in a £142 million move five years later.
7. Andy Robertson
Talk about an absolute steal, £8m is daylight robbery at this point.
The Scot may be one of the most recent arrivals deep into the decade, but he has solved the long-standing conundrum at left-back and has become the world’s leading player in his position – to which those voting for awards seemingly can’t get their heads around.
For the early stages of his time at the club he was on the periphery as he got to grips with Klopp’s style of play, and once he was given his chance there was no looking back and he instantly endeared himself to supporters – most notably with a pressure act extending the length of the field against Man City in 2018.
Not only is he defensively astute but his attacking prowess is a sight to behold with his decision making and deliveries into the box ensuring he is an integral member of Liverpool’s creative hub.
6. Steven Gerrard
What can be said about this man that hasn’t already been said?
While the start of the 2010s triggered the beginning of the end for Gerrard’s career, Liverpool’s ‘Captain Fantastic’ remained an ever-present amid the club’s early turmoil on and off the field.
Rodgers’ arrival would then see Gerrard eventually move to a deeper midfield role, showcasing his level of versatility once more, with the shift in 2013/14 helping to propel Liverpool to the cusp of the league title.
He remained deadly from the spot, acted as the creative linchpin from deep (15 assists in 2013/14) and continued to create memorable moments until the very end.
If we were assessing a pre-2010 Gerrard than he certainly would have been higher in the list.
5. Roberto Firmino
An integral component of Europe’s most formidable attacking trio and one who is slowly starting to, rightfully, gain admiration from the wider footballing world, something those in and around Anfield have not struggled with.
Firmino has been a member of the squad for half of the previous decade, is as selfless as they come, a master of creating and finding space, has a relentless work ethic and he possesses an abundance of tricks and flicks which leave you instantly mesmerised.
Bobby’s signing was met with mixed reviews and he experienced a slow start as Rodgers struggled to find his perfect position, but concerns were quickly banished under Klopp and his star has risen exponentially ever since.
4. Sadio Mane
Liverpool’s smiling assassin.
Mane was the first meaningful signing by Klopp and he triggered a new wave of success for the Reds when he arrived in 2016.
He has since risen to the top echelon of players in the world having taken his game to the next level as the ebbs and flows of confidence levels have been bridged, making way for a consistent and ruthless finisher.
He is in the peak of his powers and has become the player Liverpool turn to in moments of need, scoring and assisting at the most of crucial of times.
3. Mohamed Salah
Talk about instant impact.
From day dot Salah has been nothing short of exceptional, amassing goals and individual honours at a rate which, at times, can make you overlook how truly special he is.
In 121 appearances to date he has 80 goals and 34 assists to his name, with 60 of those goalscoring involvements coming in his debut season – and such was his incredible start to life at Liverpool he can be upheld to the highest of standards.
A pacey winger with a ruthless finishing streak who ensures any defender is on edge when he is in their vicinity, he may appear selfish at times but which world-class forward isn’t?
Who knows how long he will remain at Anfield so be sure to soak up every moment of his genius while you can.
2. Luis Suarez
The Uruguayan’s three-and-a-half season spell at Anfield was one that will live long in the memory of Liverpool fans for a multitude of reasons, both good and bad.
A fierce competitor who you would love to have on your team but despise when they line up against you, a prolific goalscorer with a technical brilliance that would leave you spellbound.
His record speaks for itself, 82 goals and 47 assists in 133 appearances. And his performances throughout the 2013/14 season, which returned 31 league goals and saw him named PFA Player of the Year, are ones which cemented his place in the club’s history.
A figure of consistency and a standout performer from the day he arrived in 2011 until his departure in 2014, meaning he edges Salah to the second spot.
1. Virgil van Dijk
In less than two years at Anfield, the Dutchman has cemented himself as one of the best players to don the Liverpool shirt, and if we’re being honest it took less than half that time to reach that conclusion.
A leader, a colossus at the back who instils belief and confidence in those around him while simultaneously striking fear into the opposition, and a player who instantly transformed Klopp’s side.
He rarely, if ever, misses a game, is key in both penalty boxes, is calmness personified and the fact that he is a leading candidate for the Ballon d’Or speaks volumes of his ability.
Van Dijk may not have been at Anfield as long as those who precede him in the list, but he rightfully sits atop of the pile.