Not many relationships in football are as enduring as Liverpool’s 43-year love affair with European football.
Manchester United might have their ’20 times’, but Liverpool have Rome twice, Wembley, Paris, Madrid, and, in the most dramatic circumstances of them all, Istanbul. Try knocking them off that perch!
Unsurprisingly, quite a few players have contributed towards this glittering European pedigree, and when it comes specifically to the modern Champions League the Redmen might have one of the most eclectic, even bizarre list of European goalscorers – the only list, in fact, where Steven Gerrard can be found rubbing shoulders with the great Jari Litmanen and forgettable faces like David N’gog.
Without further ado, here are the Reds’ top goalscorers in the Champions League era…
29. Robbie Keane (2)
The boyhood Liverpool (and Celtic and Spurs and LA Galaxy) fan lasted half a season in Merseyside before deciding he shouldn’t have bothered leaving White Hart Lane in the first place. Still managed to fit in a couple of group-stage goals in Europe.
The man’s career since leaving Liverpool is quite something – you very rarely see Ross County sandwiched between Panionios and Budapest Honved – but he has his own slice of European history for the Reds after scoring against PSV Eindhoven and Debrecen.
27. Daniel Sturridge (2)
In a world where life was fair, Sturridge would be right at the top of this list having had a long and healthy career. As it is, he was released by Liverpool three days after their latest European triumph – he got to keep the winners’ medal though!
Laugh all you like, but its easy to forget that without the heroics of the young Frenchman and Neil Mellor, Gerrard wouldn’t have had a comeback to complete against Olympiakos in the first place in 2005.
25. Robbie Fowler (2)
One of the most legendary marksmen in Liverpool’s history, a man who practically breathed goals… only got off the mark for the Reds in the Champions League in 2008 during his second spell at the club? In fairness, it probably has something to do with Liverpool mainly playing in the UEFA Cup when Fowler was in his prime.
Overrated? Underrated? Flop? The missing piece to Liverpool’s midfield? We may never know with Keita, but what I can tell you is that he has scored against both Porto and Leipzig in European football.
23. Danny Murphy (2)
Murphy’s area of expertise is arguably Europe’s second-tier competition – after winning the UEFA Cup with Liverpool in 2001, he came agonisingly close to doing so with Fulham in what would have been a pretty unique achievement.
Where do we start with this man? You’d probably put a decent sum of money on him never adding to his tally of three Champions League goals, and yet all three of them are surely amongst the most iconic in Liverpool history. We’ll never see another player quite like him.
21. Jari Litmanen (3)
Litmanen’s body was basically falling apart at this point, and his relationship with Gerard Houllier wasn’t too great either, so to his credit three Champions League goals in his second season at Anfield is surely proof of his greatness.
His decent goalscoring returns in England were invariably less spectacular than his unique fashion choices, but he deserves credit for coming back from a fractured tibia to score one of Liverpool’s penalties in the 2005 final.
19. Milan Baros (3)
Another Champions League winner who possessed a jackhammer of a left foot, but unfortunately the moment that he is best remembered for in Europe involves a very angry Welshman hitting him repeatedly with a golf club.
17. Vladimir Smicer (3)
He wasn’t quite the Steve McManaman replacement that Liverpool fans were looking for, but given the part that his outside of the box effort played a part in dragging Liverpool back into the 2005 final, they probably don’t mind.
Today’s kids will never remember, but before the existence of YouTube and those stepovers against Algeria, Heskey was actually a very highly regarded target man, and he was responsible for one of Liverpool’s great European goals, dumping Roma out of Europe with a thumping header.
15. Sami Hyypia (4)
One of many Liverpool greats that you’d have loved to have seen in the current side, Hyypia wasn’t just a beacon of calm at the back for the Redmen, but had an eye for goal himself – his volley against Juventus in the 2005 quarter-final was a vital part of Liverpool’s journey to Istanbul.
13. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (5)
This man would have enjoyed quite the sigh of relief after Kingsley Coman got on the end of Joshua Kimmich’s cross in Lisbon, because up to that point it looked as if he’d chucked his best ever chance of a Champions League winners’ medal away. And yet, it was his sale which facilitated the Liverpool rebuild which facilitated their 2019 victory in Madrid, so in a way… he was always a winner.
11. Yossi Benayoun (6)
If you were compiling a list of the Premier League’s all-time greats, you’d spend at least six hours in conversation before landing on Benayoun. And yet the clutch midfielder has seemingly popped up in half of the big games of the 2000s, not least in a smash-and-grab win at the Bernabeu for Liverpool in 2009.
Like Fowler, Owen probably just missed the boat for the return of Liverpool’s European glory days. To make matters worse, after refusing to take part in Liverpool’s 2004/05 campaign as to avoid getting cup tied before a move to Real Madrid, Owen ended up watching the Reds win the whole thing, with that particular trophy still missing from his repertoire.
9. Ryan Babel (7)
7. Dirk Kuyt (9)
5. Luis Garcia (10)
Yeah, he doesn’t score goals anymore, blah blah blah… The Brazilian will still go down as one of the most important players as Liverpool reached back-to-back finals, with the man with the shiniest teeth in football radiant throughout the 2017/18 campaign in particular.