Next up in our 100 Players Who Shook the Kop countdown is an attacking midfielder who said a fond farewell after starring in Istanbul…
Date of birth: May 24, 1973 Place of birth: Vernerice Nationality: Czech Position: Midfielder Years at the club: 1999-2005 Signed from: Lens Left for: Bordeaux Position in 2006 poll: 64
Czech midfielder Vladimir Smicer endured a stop-start period with Liverpool but undoubtedly departed the club a hero for his exploits as a substitute in the 2005 Champions League final.
The attacking midfielder, who was capable of playing on either wing or in a central creative position, was recruited by Gerard Houllier during the summer of 1999 partly to fill the void left by Steve McManaman's exit.
Injuries hampered Smicer's first campaign at Anfield but with a year's experience of English football he improved throughout the treble season of 2000-01; the Czech contributed seven goals and started both the League Cup and FA Cup finals.
Lack of consistency and equally a lack of fortune was an overriding issue in Vladimir's progress with Liverpool but the midfielder's technique was never in question - he possessed an eye for a goal as well as the vision to complete a defence-splitting pass.
A genuine nice-guy who was warmly appreciated by his teammates and who produced breath-taking feats of skill in training sessions, Smicer scored a brilliant and famous winning volley against Chelsea in 2002.
Often introduced as a substitute or withdrawn when he did feature from the beginning of matches, Smicer's appearance totals dropped considerably during Houllier's final two years at the helm.
He did, though, add a fourth winner's medal to his collection with Liverpool after victory over Manchester United in the 2003 League Cup showpiece. More, much more indeed, was still to come for the likeable international.
Another injury disrupted his preparations for Rafael Benitez's maiden campaign on Merseyside but the attacker made a comeback just in time to deliver his greatest impact in a Liverpool jersey.
Replacing Harry Kewell during the early stages of the Champions League final against AC Milan, Smicer blasted home the second goal of Liverpool's famous comeback and then coolly slotted away his spot-kick in the shoot-out.
Vladimir knew before the historic encounter in Istanbul that it would be his last match for the club but concluded his Reds career with a poignant kiss of the badge which resonated with supporters.
Appearances: 184 Goals: 19 Honours with LFC: 1 Champions League (2004-05), 1 FA Cup (2000-01), 1 UEFA Cup (2000-01), 2 League Cups (2000-01, 2002-03) Did you know? Smicer received the perfect present by signing for the club on his 26th birthday Where is he now? Working with the Czech national team