This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Jamie Carragher has come out in defence of former teammate Michael Owen, who has been the target of criticism from some Liverpool fans.
Former Reds striker Owen will release an autobiography on Friday detailing his career in an attempt to reveal some lesser-known facts about his time at Anfield, and his decision to leave the club.
Fans often point to his decision to join Real Madrid as the turning point, with many also unable to forgive the move to Manchester United. Now, they are rejecting his claim that he was desperate to return to Liverpool once he made the move back to England.
They’re not the only ones to lay into the former England international, with Alan Shearer also criticising his actions whilst at Newcastle, which resulted in a Twitter dispute between the two.
In Owen’s defence, Carragher told The Mirror: “I must say I think some of the stick from Liverpool fans is bang out of order considering what he did for the club and the reaction other players get who did nothing for Liverpool.
“It hurts Michael and his family, but hopefully this book will let people know the real story and why he came to these decisions.”
Liverpool fans – as shown here – have been critical of players who have left Anfield to then find out that the grass isn’t always greener, and because it has been 15 years since he played for the Reds it is easy to forget the contribution he made.
He scored an incredible 158 goals in 297 appearances, won the Ballon d’Or in 2001, and in the same year single-handedly won the FA Cup final with two late goals against Arsenal, as well as contributing to UEFA Cup and League Cup victories.
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As Carragher suggests, not many Liverpool players can boast of such exploits, and therefore the vitriol aimed towards Owen is a little unfair.
His admission that he wanted to return to Anfield should be treated with appreciation rather than a ploy to win over fans. After all, it was the club he started at and where he played his best football.