Well, we gotta pick one. I feel like every time we get to a category and we look at a certain aspect or pattern of the nominees, we say, "Well this tells you a lot about how this season went." Same here, and maybe definitively. Because there just aren't that many nominees. You'd like to think you'd have four or five candidates and a decent argument for most if not all of them. But it didn't go that way with Liverpool, either with players suffering injury or loss in form for long stretches or tiring down the stretch.
One omission I wasn't totally comfortable with was Jose Enrique. Had I written this in February he most certainly would have been on the list. But exhaustion led to a horrible end to the season, and you can't be named player of the year for a good half or three quarters of a year. Unless you're Ryan Giggs or David Ginola.
Martin Skrtel - Probably the people's choice. Skrtel tied for most appearances in the league with Enrique, but his form didn't drop like the Spaniard's did. Or at least not as much, and was generally excused because he was making up for Jamie Carragher when it did. A commanding, downright scary presence, Skrtel's game really rounded out this year. In previous seasons it seemed he could be rattled or bullied a bit, but not this season. Snuffing out attack after attack, and even becoming better with the ball (though he only had one way to go). The fact that he was the first to be rumored to be headed for the exit door for a Champions League club kind of tells you how good he was this season.'
Daniel Agger - A stretch, I know, as he only made 31 appearances in comparison to Skrtel's 42. But Liverpool were a different team with Agger partnering Skrtel, and Skrtel was a different player. Assured, graceful, and commanding when he needs to be, it seems Agger keeps Liverpool ticking over. There's an easy argument to be made that he's more important than Skrtel, simply because of the calming effect the Dane has over him and the entire team. Liverpool's defense in the middle of the season, with the two getting a run of games together, was just about the least of the problems they had. That was basically down to Agger and Skrtel equally. Put it this way, we noticed when he wasn't there quite easily.
Luis Suarez - Obviously, some big caveats here. There's the whole Evra-gate, and no matter what your opinion of it was it was a black eye for the club and should have been handled way better. Second, his scoring rate just isn't high enough for a player of his quality and record in Holland and internationally. That said, when Suarez was good, Liverpool was good -- or at least the performances were. Energetic, creative, at times unplayable, and these tended to be in Liverpool's biggest matches. Yeah, he could be petulant, and dive-y, but it's all part of the package. Those were outweighed by the pure delight Suarez was at times. I can't think of a Liverpool player who was more dangerous with the ball at his feet that I've seen, and the way he can just ghost past defenders with almost no effort makes us all giggle. At the heart of pretty much every goal Liverpool scored, his importance really can't be overstated.
So who ya got?