You may have listened to our listened to our latest pod on Strikers this week – If you haven’t, you really should and links are at the end – well that is the first in a series of weeks where we’ll be discussing different positions that will ultimately lead to us picking our ‘Team of the 90s’. The planned ‘Team’ podcast is penciled in for 21 December’s pod, and before then we’ll have pods on Midfielders, Defenders and Goalkeepers where we’ll be discussing contenders and picking a shortlist of five to bring forward to the final pod.
After some lengthy discussions on this weeks pod, the guests unwittingly – as we’ve only since decided on the forthcoming team element – shortlisted these five strikers who will pick from in 2015’s final pod. So as they say, in no particular order;
Having already nabbed the AK90s ‘goal of the 90s’ gong (read here!) the non-flying Dutchman is a contender for team of the decade as well. He began the 90s at Inter Milan, but it was at Arsenal where Bergkamp not only became one of the best players in Europe at the time, but also one of the best to ever grace the Premier League. The 1997-98 double season was perhaps Dennis at his very, very best, as he scooped PFA Player of the Year and scored more memorable goals in one season than most do in a lifetime. However he left his crowning glory to THAT goal at World Cup 98. Not the typical striker in the 90s sense of the term, but more than worthy on this shortlist.
For anyone like us who lives the 1990s, then there really is only one Ronaldo. R9, ‘the phenomenon’ or Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima, whatever you want to call him Ron was a bona fide superstar of the decade. Where as we’re used to the goal stats that a certain namesake now produces, the Brazilian was tallying them up at ridiculous speed long before anyone heard the name Cristiano. In his one season at Barcelona he notched 47 goals in 39 games, and was the true star of World Cup 98 (if you forget what happened in the final). A born goal-scorer and I quote from this weeks pod ‘If it weren’t for injuries, would have been talked about in the same breath as Pele and Maradona’.
A man simply born to score goals, and lots of them – over and over again. I think thanks to Alan’s later day role as the bordering annoying Match of Day pundit, we forget just how bloody good Shearer was in his heyday. Twice a British record transfer holder (and once world), money was always well spent when it came to Alan Shearer. His goals and partnership with Chris Sutton led to title success with Blackburn in 1995, while his exploits at Euro 96 saw a record-breaking move back home to Newcastle – where he became the clubs record goal-scorer. His 260 Premier League goals record is unlikely to be beaten, and in an era of truly great English strikers Shearer was the very best.
Perhaps not talked as much on the pod as perhaps he should have been – even if we did speak about old Jurgen during our transfers show back in episode three – there wasn’t much Klinsmann didn’t do successfully in the 1990s. The decade kicked-off with a World Cup winners medal at Italia 90, before becoming a key man in Inter’s Serie A charge. Somehow he was persuaded to join Spurs in 1994, and lit-up the Premier League in his solitary season picking up the FWA Player of the Year in the process. More international success was gained at Euro 96, before more goals and medals at Bayern Munich. An ice cool finisher, and one of the decades very best.
A legend in Florence and a scorer of 184 goals in 318 Serie A matches, ‘Batigol’ is the best striker Diego Maradonna has ever seen – that’s a direct quote too. Ok, so Diego is a little biased but that’s no discredit to Gabriel, who is still his country’s record goal-scorer with 56 Argentina goals to his name, a feat not even Lionel Messi has reached. Spent nine years with Fiorentina, even staying when they were relegated in 1993, and now has a bronze statue of himself in the clubs town. To this day possibly still underrated, but there’s no questioning his place on our final shortlist.
To listen to Ash Rose and guests Rob Gallagher, Peter Hunt and Xaiver Cantegreli talk through the decade’s very best strikers, you can download this weeks pod on iTunes or listen here. Don’t forget you have your say on Twitter to, tell us who you would have up front in your dream 90s XI