By Rob Dore | Exclusive
It’s been three and a half years since Robbie Fowler was last seen in English football. When his three-month contract with Blackburn Rovers expired in December 2008 and no new deal was on offer, the Liverpool legend moved to the Australian A-League.
Down Under he enjoyed two good seasons, first with North Queensland where he was installed as their marquee player and captain. He scored nine goals in 26 games, three of which were named as goals of the week.
The next season he moved to Perth Glory where he scored nine goals in 28 games, ending the season as their top goalscorer.
Robbie then spent the rest of 2011 and in to 2012 playing for Malaysian side Muangthong United where he was an instant hit. He didn’t maintain the scoring rate he enjoyed in Australia but he was made the player/coach after the dismissal of Henrique Calisto. Robbie decided to leave after the arrival of Slavisa Jokanovic as head coach.
That brings us right to the present. He was rumoured to be close to joining Blackpool shortly after leaving Muangthong but the parties were unable to agree a contract.
Robbie Fowler in his prime was one of the greatest finishers the Premier League and arguably English football has ever seen. He’s nicknamed ‘God’ by the Liverpool fans for good reason. Even now the Anfield faithful adores him for the 183 goals scored in 369 appearances across two spells at the club.
At 37 years of age he’s not in the prime of his career but he’s played consistently up until February of this year. When he came to Paddy Power to shoot our lie detector video he certainly looked sharp. There’s been no John Barnes-like ballooning in weight.
This is largely to do with his desire to continue playing.
“I am looking for a club, I know I’m getting old but I want to play. I enjoy it and I always said I’d keep playing until I feel as if I can’t play or I’m not enjoying it any more,” Fowler told the Paddy Power Blog.
“I do still enjoy it, unfortunately I don’t have a club or have even spoken to anyone yet because I don’t think anyone knows that I want to continue to play.
“So it may not be my choice at the end of the day. I want to play but I’ll wait and see if I’ll get any offers.”
With Paul Scholes (37) and Ryan Giggs (38) both signed for another season with Manchester United it’s clear that older players who have maintained their fitness can add value to a club.
That’s not to say Robbie is eyeing a move back to Liverpool or one of their Premier League rivals but the contact he had with Blackpool earlier in the year shows at Championship level he is still of interest, at least.
He may not cover every blade of grass during a game but when you can finish like he can you don’t have to.
Could a fit Fowler prove a gem of a signing for someone outside the Premier League?