Friday, December 22, 2006

100 Person Who Shock The Kop - NO 99: Erik Meijer


Voted in at number 99 in our '100 Players Who Shook The Kop' series is that renowned 'mad Dutchman' Erik Meijer.
Four years after our ground-breaking '100 Days That Shook The Kop', we are delighted to invite you to enjoy our new '100 Players Who Shook The Kop' series – the definitive countdown of the 100 players who have made the biggest impact at Liverpool.

Over 110,000 supporters have all nominated their own personal Top 10 players in order of impact made and now the definitive top 100 countdown is underway.

Every player who has made the top 100 – and there are some surprises in there - will be honoured on this website via the e-Season ticket console with a specially produced video clip, including archive footage and exclusive interviews.

Since 1892 hundreds of players have represented this club but everyone has their own particular favourites so don't expect this list to be based solely on talent. The greatness of a player can be measured in many ways – obviously, his ability on the pitch is the most important, but 100 PWSTK is much more than that. It's about the impact the individuals chosen have had on this club, be it for a variety of reasons. Maybe it was because of their unique rapport with the crowd, a specific incident that has never been forgotten or anything else that has left a lasting impression.

Name: Erik Meijer

Years at Liverpool: 1999 to 2000
Position: Forward

Date-of-birth: 2/8/1969
Birthplace: Meerssen, Holland

Signed from: Bayer Leverkusen (July 1999)

Games played: 27
Goals scored: 2

Honours won: None

Liverpool supporting Dutchman Meijer arrived at Anfield from Bayer Leverkusen on a free transfer during the summer of 1999 and immediately struck up a special rapport with the club's supporters. He was to make just 27 appearances in his brief spell on Merseyside but his boundless enthusiasm and passion for the Reds established him as a firm favourite with those in the stands. A Dutch international, who won one cap while with the Reds, Meijer was a towering, powerfully built, striker, who made his debut on the opening day of the 1999/2000 season as a substitute in a 2-1 away win at Sheffield Wednesday. The following month he netted his first and last goals in a red shirt when bagging a brace in a League Cup tie at Hull City's Boothferry Park but he struggled to establish himself as a first team regular and was more often than not named among the substitutes. Meijer's willingness to chase lost causes was one of his most endearing features, as was his ability to act as an unofficial cheerleader when warming up on the touchline. Sadly, the signing of Emile Heskey during the latter part of that campaign was to restrict his opportunities further and after just three substitute appearances the following season he was sent out on loan to Preston before completing a permanent transfer back to the Bundesliga with Hamburg. His love of the Reds, however, remained as strong as ever and prior to Liverpool's appearance in the 2001 UEFA Cup Final he was spotted among the vast throng of Liverpudlians in Dortmund's Altermarket.

Sold to: SV Hamburg (December 2000)

Claim to fame: Enjoying a pre-match pint and sing-song with Liverpool fans in the Altermarket, Dortmund, prior to the 2001 UEFA Cup Final

Did you know? On his own personal website he used to give out cookery tips and recipes

Where is he now? Recently hung up his boots and his living back in his native Holland

Jamie Carragher on Erik Meijer: "He was just a great fella to have around the place and a great fella to have on the pitch when he did play – a real team player who'd really put himself about. He was just unfortunate at the time that we had so many good strikers and he was probably number four choice before he got the chance to move on. Mad Erik, I think he's definitely a cult-hero."

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