Back in 2008, former Reds boss Rafa Benitez rather amazingly decided it was time to shaft playmaker Xabi Alonso and bring in Gareth Barry, who had been forming a solid reputation for himself at Aston Villa as a holding midfielder.
Benitez has since revealed that he wanted the England man due to his versatility, being capable of playing in central midfield, left back and left wing. But the potential £19million transfer wasn’t to be, despite there being widespread discussion in the media of the deal going ahead.
But according to Gareth Barry, while watching one of Liverpool’s pre-season friendlies, he overheard chants from the Kop of “You can stick Gareth Barry up your arse”, and realised that the Reds faithful would not look fondly upon him replacing fan favourite Xabi Alonso.
Both midfielders stayed put, until a year later, when Barry joined up with Manchester City and went on to lift a Premier League title, and Alonso departed for Real Madrid, where he has won a League title and lifted the Copa Del Rey, not to mention a World Cup with Spain.
Back in Merseyside, Rafa Benitez drafted in £20million signing Alberto Aquilani, who turned out to be a huge flop and only made 26 appearances for Liverpool in all competitions.