Some terrible players have donned the red shirt of Liverpool in recent years, but none are much worse than David N’Gog.
Liverpool, in 2009, were a shade of their former selves, that goes without saying, and heading into one of their most tumultuous periods of football to date. A wayward transfer policy at the hands of former manager Gerard Houllier and current boss Rafael Benitez had seen them recruit some of the worst players we have ever had the displeasure of laying our eyes on.
Pure, unadulterated rubbish that had no place in the Anfield tunnel, not as a player, ball boy, water boy, cleaner or mascot. They were trespassers, and by all means, should have been charged with some sort of crime for being so utterly terrible. What makes it worse is that the club missed out on opportunities to sign the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo (Sky Sports), Dani Alves (Sky Sports) and Gareth Barry (Liverpool Echo) throughout the last decade, but thought it sufficient to welcome such travesties as Phillip Degan, Vincent Weijl, Emmanuel Mendy and, of course, David N’Gog.
Ah, David N’Gog – certainly one of the more divisive players who have stepped through the doors of Anfield. Fans either torn between wanting to forget his move ever happened and wanting to remember every excruciating moment he represented the club to make their current quality feel all the sweeter.
The then-19-year-old Frenchman arrived a fledgeling ‘talent’ from Paris Saint-Germain in summer 2008. The Reds described him as “one of the brightest young talents in French football” and “lightning quick”, although he managed just one – yes, one – goal in 18 matches for PSG the season before (as per The Guardian).
So how did his ‘performances’ in Ligue 1 translate into the Premier League? Absolutely terribly, of course.
The youngster somehow found the back of the net six times in the opening half of the season, including a goal against Manchester United at Anfield. A year later he would enjoy plenty of opportunities under Roy Hodgson, a man who will easily go down as one of the worst managers in Liverpool history.
After Kenny Dalglish steadied the ship bring in Luiz Suarez and Andy Carroll on transfer deadline day, N’Gog’s day were over.
With the best years of his career behind him, the Frenchman moved to Bolton in 2011 and failed to sprinkle his limited talents enough to prevent them from suffering Championship relegation after 11 successive years in the top flight. The drop down in quality did not seem to suit him either, and though he made a brief reappearance back in the Premier League for Swansea City it was quite obvious that he lacked the qualities to “make it”.
France beckoning with Reims securing the players signature for the 2014-15 season. N’Gog improved slightly bagging a goal in every four appearances, but it was not enough to keep him from suffering a second relegation in his career. A brief and unsuccessful in Greece with Panionios followed before Ross County of all times tried their luck.
David N’Gog, formerly of Liverpool, now represents Budapest Honvéd FC in the Hungarian first division.
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