Dirk Kuyt

  • Date of Birth: 22/7/80
  • Birthplace: Katwijk
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Position: Forward
  • Signed 2006
  • Debut 26/8/06
  • Appearances 285
  • Goals 71
Dirk Kuyt profile image

Profile

Dirk Kuyt is one of the hardest workers Anfield has ever seen - and his time at the club was punctuated by never-to-be-forgotten goals.

In six years at Liverpool the Dutchman fired in European and Carling Cup finals, scored hat-tricks and braces against our biggest rivals, struck late to earn us a place in the Champions League and smashed home numerous crucial penalties.

Originally purchased by Rafael Benitez in 2006 as a striker, he proved himself to be selfless and versatile by operating just as often on the right wing.

Kuyt arrived on these shores with a prolific goalscoring record in Dutch football, latterly Feyenoord, and he instantly found favour on the Kop with an all-action debut as a substitute at home to West Ham on August 26.

The Holland international notched his first Liverpool goal against Newcastle United on September 20, 2006, and he'd net a further 13 in his debut season.

He was already proving a hit with the fans, not least for his habit of applauding all four stands after each game.

The 2006-07 campaign ended with the Champions League final. Kuyt hit the winning penalty in the semi-final triumph over Chelsea and was rewarded with a starting place against AC Milan. It was he who scored the Reds' late consolation in Athens.

One of the No.18's finest moments in a red shirt arrived in October 2007 with a penalty brace at Goodison Park as Liverpool clinched a dramatic last-minute win over their bitter rivals.

This came just months after the death of his father, a personal tragedy which, by his own admission, impacted upon his game.

However, by the end of 2007-08 Kuyt had returned to top form, with priceless goals against Marseille, Inter Milan and Arsenal helping the Reds reach another Champions League semi-final. Defeat to Chelsea followed despite another goal in the Anfield leg to take his tally for the season to 11.

By the start of 2008-09, Benitez had moulded the six footer into an indispensable right winger, from where he scored 15 times to help Liverpool take champions Manchester United right to the wire.

Kuyt continued his knack of breaking Everton hearts with goals in both 2009-10 derbies en route to a final haul of 11. Sadly, it proved to be a poor season for the club as a whole, with failure to qualify for the Champions League resulting in Benitez parting company with the Reds.

The weeks that followed would go some way to easing Kuyt's disappointment, however, as Holland reached their first World Cup final in 32 years.

Our man started every game in South Africa, where his performances earned universal acclaim. Dutch icon Johan Cruyff was among those to laud the forward - claiming he was 'worth his weight in gold'.

Despite Kuyt's best efforts, though, it was clubmates Fernando Torres and Pepe Reina who returned to Melwood with World Cup medals following Spain's extra-time victory.

He found some consolation in top scoring for the Reds in 2010-11, with his tally of 15 including an unforgettable hat-trick against Manchester United at Anfield.

The following season saw Kuyt collect a first medal with Liverpool. He scored a goal in extra-time and then converted a spot-kick in the Carling Cup shoot-out win over Cardiff City.

It would prove to be one of his final acts in a Liverpool shirt. Kuyt left for a new challenge at Turkish side Fenerbahce in the summer of 2012 with his place as an Anfield great secure.

Past Players