So much of a footballer’s career can come down to luck – making the right move to the right club at the right time can make or break a reputation.
So – all that said, who remembers Alou Diarra?
The French midfielder was on our books between 2002 and 2005, but never kicked a ball for the first team. It was unlucky for the lad – he clearly had bags of talent and arrived on a much-heralded free transfer from Bayern Munich.
In an interview with a French radio station, he has admitted he was far too young to move abroad.
“[I regret] my first experience in England, with Liverpool,” he said. “It was far too early and I didn’t have enough experience to go abroad.”
After leaving the club Diarra went on to have a great career, playing 44 times for France and featuring in two World Cups.
He joined Lens in the summer of 2005 and also played for Lyon, Bordeaux, and Marseilles in Ligue Un. He returned to England with West Ham in 2012.
At 35, he now plays for Nancy and is winding down his career.