One of Bayern Munich’s most consistent defenders of the last 25 years, Thomas Helmer, has admitted he was too scared to make the move to Liverpool when the chance arose during his heyday.
The centre-half won a plethora of trophies during his career, most of which was spent with the all-conquering Bayern Munich.
Helmer won three Bundesliga titles, a DFB-Pokal title and a UEFA Cup. He could – and will feel he should – have been a Champions League winner too. Helmer was part of the Bayern side that conceded two injury-time goals to lose the 1999 final to Manchester United.
Now for the first time, Helmer has admitted he was subject to an approach from Liverpool back in 1998. With Bayern ready to accept Liverpool’s offer, the decision over the move was left in Helmer’s hands.
“I didn’t have the courage to go to Liverpool”, Helmer admitted.
“At that point, I was a bit cowardly.
“The prospect of winning a few more titles was more important to me than adventure and money.”
Liverpool later signed Helmer’s compatriot Markus Babbel, who would be a Treble winner with the Reds in 2001.
Helmer did move to the Premier League in 1999 when he switched to Sunderland. However, the Euro 96 winner only played two matches before moving back to Germany with Hertha Berlin before then retiring.
Salah sends message to Gerrard
Mo Salah, meanwhile, says he wants to extend the newly-created gap between himself and Steven Gerrard in the number of Champions League goals for Liverpool.
Salah overtook Gerrard on Wednesday to become the club’s all-time leading goalscorer in Europe’s elite competition.
The Egyptian has now scored 22 goals for Liverpool in the Champions League, one more than the club legend.
Indeed, in scoring after 56 seconds against Midtjylland, he also netted Liverpool’s fastest-ever Champions League goal.
Speaking to BT Sport after the match in Denmark, Salah insisted that he has plans to make a mockery of Gerrard’s tally.
“It’s a great feeling of course to be the top scorer for this club and in their history,” Salah said (via the Daily Mirror).
“[It’s] something I am proud of but I need to keep going like that and score more goals.
“I need to make the gap bigger between me and him. I am trying all the time to score goals to help the team win games. That’s the most important thing.”