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Red of the Day - Steve Harkness

by Dave Usher


Cumbrian defender Harkness was snapped up by Kenny Dalglish for £75,000 from hometown club Carlisle United in 1989. Dalglish had been impressed with the youngster's performance against the Reds in an FA Youth Cup tie where he had caught the eye playing as a striker.


He began his career in the reserves in midfield but was quickly converted to full back. He had to wait two years before being handed a first team debut in August 1991 by Graeme Souness who had recently replaced Dalglish.


Harkness was way down the pecking order for the left back spot, having to go up against the likes of David Burrows, Steve Staunton, Julian Dicks and Stig Inge Bjornebye. Frustration got the better of him and he asked Roy Evans for a transfer in the 1994-95 season. A loan spell at Southend followed, but he stuck around and eventually he got his break at the end of that season when an injury crisis opened the door for him.


He did well enough to earn a new contract and was a regular in the side the following season, playing mostly as a wing back in Evans' 3-5-2 formation. He was beginning to establish himself as a first team player when a rash challenge from Coventry winger John Salako shattered Harkness's leg and sidelined him for almost a year.


He battled back and forced his way back into Evans' plans, this time slotting into the side on the left of the back three.


The arrival of Gerard Houllier signalled the end for 'Harky', the French boss wasted little time in showing him the door when he became sole manager after an ill fated joint manager experiment with Roy Evans. The player who had joined the club for £75k almost a decade earlier left for ten times that amount to join former boss Souness at Benfica.


He didn't last long in Portugal however, Souness was sacked a month after Harkness arrived and the defender fell out with the club president as a result, returning to England to join Blackburn Rovers, where he would soon be re-united with Souness who took over at Ewood Park seven months later.


Six months later Harkness was on the move again, spending two years at Sheffield Wednesday before linking up with former team-mate Mark Wright at Chester City. Injuries were beginning to catch up with him however and in July 2002 he hung up his boots at the age of 31.



Date of Birth: 27/08/71

Nationality: English

Postition: Defender

Games: 139

Goals: 3

ClubHons (Lpool): League Championship 1946/47

Int Hons: England Youth caps

Other Clubs: Carlisle United, Huddersfield Town (loan), Southend United (loan), Benfica, Blackburn Rovers, Sheffield Wednesday, Chester City

Steve HARKNESS 1989-99



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If he was in the side now he would be our top scorer barring the front two. I used to love it when he used to to smash them in from outside the area. He would have a lot more goals to his name if he had played more because he knew where that goal was.

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Jessica her name was, Jessica Harkness, she didnt mind if you called her Jessie I felt sad when she told a load of people she was Steve's daughter and no one else knew who he was, myself I went with the crowd to see where it was going and said nothing, hoping the disappointment in her eyes might have let me in, get them while they are down and all that, however I dont feel I followed this up forcibly enough to make the impact I had set myself up for, kind of like doing a 1-2 and then skying the return or getting tackled or something. That said she didnt stick around for long, she didnt really need a job her mother had pushed her into it and being the daughter of a millionaire mediocre footy player living behind big gates in formby she didnt really grasp the other people who seemed to display an affinity for working and stuff, when I realised she wasnt going to cut it it was then I in talking to her let on I knew who her father was, which made me look weak given she must have noted I didnt let on that I knew at the time when people was around and let her fall on her own looking a tad silly and didnt have the balls to step in, they never like weakness, specially not the footballer's daughters, all that testosterone they've come to expect in a father figure, I knew it straight away, in fact I was aware this could have become the case when I stayed silent, but I figured it was a risk worth taking, let the wind out her sails before admitting you are a fan, then maybe the little wind you can muster might just blow her over, I realise my error now and I should have stood up proud when everyone was like 'who is he' I should have got my cock out and said I knew him very well he was an alright player, then I'd have had her. They love confidence, Ive seen titanic, anyways I was in a very serious relationship at the time suffice to say I'd have cheated like a 100m sprinter if I'd have bore witness to her gash in the cold light of day, we all would, holier than thous are the worst, Mary cheated with God on Joseph left him so inadequate he walked around with a donkey after that make what you will.

There is still hope if I ever catch her on a night out I'll be right in there telling her it happend the way I imagined it, rich people have their minds on rich things and are notorious for having bad memories so she might accept my rewritten historical version of events after a few drinks, who is to say? I would have less than nothing to lose so watch out if your reading this jess, your mine or get out of Liverpool if you dont fancy me, I've got you curious at the very least, why so coy love, you wouldnt have gotten a job with the rotters outside your gates if you didnt at least feel the need to live in the shoes of the commoners, breathing in our carbons sprinkling your millionaire's daughterness upon our wretched existences, well out of your depth love, 5 steps ahead of you in that sense.

 She was blonde with the eyes of an angel. Hope this helps.

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