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How Seamus Coleman almost became a Liverpool player

A single phone call back in the late 2000s could have seen Seamus Coleman join Liverpool instead of Everton.

Coleman signed for Everton in 2009 for just £60,000 and has spent a decade at Goodison Park.

He joined Liverpool’s local rivals from Sligo Rovers – a team who ply their trade in the League of Ireland Premier Division.

Coleman played 55 times for them over three seasons.

The Sligo manager at the time was Paul Cook, who currently manages Wigan Athletic in the Championship.

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Cook, born in Liverpool, was impressed by the quality of Seamus Coleman. He decided to make a few calls to try and convince a bigger club to sign him according to Paul Jones.

“He [Cook] phoned Liverpool,” Jones said. “At the time, Rafa Benitez was in charge and Cook said, ‘I’ve got a cracking player here.’ Benitez said if he was any good he’d be on our radar, and popped the phone down.

“He said all right then and phoned Everton, who said ‘right, let’s have a look at him’, and the rest is history.”

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It’s strange to think that somebody who is now synonymous with Everton could have been lining up for Liverpool in Sunday’s Merseyside Derby.

Rafa Benitez’s instant dismissal of a player who has performed at the highest level of English football has to raise eyebrows.

Did the Reds make a mistake in turning down Seamus Coleman? Or was Benitez right to not pursue the Irishman?

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David Brindle
LFC Fan. Multimedia Sports Journalism student. Media officer for Litherland REMYCA. Claims to fame: Once rubbed Rafa Benitez's head at a reserves derby and served chicken curry to the veggie in the Stereophonics. Two seperate occasions, obviously.

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