Liverpool fans on Merseyside and all around the world are mourning this week after news of Ian St John. St John passed away on Monday, and since then, memorials have popped up around the internet as fans and players alike recall their fond memories of a true Reds’ legend.
St John was slightly before the time of another Liverpool legend, Kenny Dalglish. However, the two Scotsmen were friends for decades, and so Dalglish had some heartfelt words at St John’s passing.
“I think it’s right to use the word ‘icon’ and I send my prayers to Betsy, his wife, and the family and I just hope they are coping as well as they possibly can,” Dalglish said.
“He certainly was [an icon], and deservedly so, an iconic figure in and around Liverpool Football Club because he came in at the very beginning with Shanks and big Yatesey [Ron Yeats].
“He got off to a terrible start by scoring a hat-trick against Everton at Goodison in the Liverpool Senior Cup, so I think after he did that he was always going to be revered in and around Liverpool.”
Current Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp wasn’t lucky enough to have the same close connection with St John as Dalglish, he recounted the story of their one meeting.
“When Ian arrived, it’s so funny because you see the pictures of the legends on the walls everywhere, on the walls and in other situations, and he looked like he looked like on those photos. It was easy to see, ‘Oh my god, yes, Ian St John!’” Klopp said.
“He was not only football-wise a legend, but a true legend as a person. It was a pure pleasure to meet him.
“He had a little present with him; I’m not sure it was his first game for Scotland, but it was [a shirt] from a game against West Germany with the number 12. I am now 53 years old so I don’t remember 100 per cent who the player was, but in my mind it was Heinz Flohe, a player from Cologne, I think he said.”
St John was a singular talent, playing 425 games as a Red and scoring 118 goals. He will be missed.