Liverpool have made some strange signings in their time, but none are more bizarre than Greek defender Sotirios Kyrgiakos.
A shocking transfer for all the wrong reasons.
Anfield was in a state of crisis; Martin Skrtel was out after breaking his jaw against Tottenham, Daniel Agger required surgery for an ongoing back problem and Liverpool could no longer rely on the talents of Sami Hyypia who had departed the club that summer after ten years of servitude (as per The Guardian).
The only logical step: sign AEK Athens’ Sotirios Kyrgiakos, of course.
Desperate times most certainly call for desperate measures and we think it’s fair to say that signing the Greek was the most desperate of them all. The football equivalent of resorting to cannibalism on a deserted island.
Nevertheless, Rafael Benitez was full in spirit and confident that his new signing had enough to make it arguably the most intense league in the world.
“He has had experience in Scotland with Rangers, and in Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt as well as with the Greek national side,” he said (as per The Guardian). “He is strong and good in the air, and we were looking for experience and he is the perfect answer.”
The answer to what we’re not quite sure of but it certainly wasn’t the solution to Liverpool’s widespread defensive issues. Maybe it had something to do with signing Alberto Aquilani and Glen Johnson in the same window.
Needless to say, the Greek did little warm himself to the Liverpool faithful other than landing a two-footed cruncher on Everton’s Marouane Fellaini in the Merseyside derby. This brief episode of stardom quickly dissolved, however, and he is more commonly known now as an infamous member of one of the worst squads to ever represent the club.
By moving for the flop, it proved Benitez (despite his legendary like status with the Reds after winning the Champions League) was on the wane on Merseyside just prior to his protracted departure and, surely, this was a major warning sign as to his future, though the Kop faithful may only start to see that now.
He lasted just two seasons before departing to join Wolfsburg.