Andriy Voronin, or the Asinine Ponytail, as he might have been known during his two-and-a-bit year stint at Anfield, isn’t actually the worst striker ever to have played for Liverpool. But while such luminaries as Sean Dundee and Erik Meijer might be more deserving of the title, they at least had sensible haircuts. Voronin’s sledgehammer-to-crack-a-walnut touch and abject phobia of the back of the net was matched for hideousness by the Golden Retriever’s penis that dangled impotently from the back of his scalp.
Whereas Andriy was signed on a free transfer from Bayer Leverkusen in 2008, his hairstyle was imported from Brion James’s character in Tango and Cash (1989) and his appearances on the pitch were as convincing as the latter’s English accent (Dick Van Dyke, circa 1964). He scored five times in twenty seven games, although one goal was against Derby County and thus doesn’t count. A steadfast refusal to trim the tresses limited Voronin’s chances of further appearances anywhere other than a convention of early 1990s doormen, and he was farmed out on loan to Hertha Berlin. Incredibly, the club even made a profit a year later by flogging him on to Dynamo Moscow for a few million quid. His role as Liverpool’s dismally-coiffeured misser of sitters was eventually awarded, after a year’s consideration, to Andy Carroll.
Yet, as Andy himself might yet prove in LFC’s number nine shirt, many stories in football have a happy ending. When Voronin appeared for the Ukraine at the 2012 European Championships, few Liverpool fans recognised the short-haired attacker wearing number ten. The Asinine Ponytail was nowhere to be seen.
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