John Charles Bryan Barnes was born in the Jamaican capital of Kingston in 1963 but it was in England that he forged his reputation as one of the most exciting and gifted players of the 1980s and 1990s, amassing nearly 600 league appearances for Watford, Liverpool, Newcastle and Charlton before finally hanging up his boots.
The winger began his professional career with Watford in 1981 and over the next six seasons helped the club win promotion from the old Second Division, as well as reaching the 1984 FA Cup final.
It was however in the famous red of Liverpool that Barnes became a truly great player. Signed by Anfield boss Kenny Dalglish for £900,000, he spent a decade on Merseyside and quickly became a firm fans’ favourite with his entertaining combination of raw pace, power and eye for goal.
Barnes won two First Division titles, two FA Cups and the League Cup with Liverpool and made over 400 appearances for the club in all competitions. His playing days came to an end at the Valley with Charlton after a two-year stint with Newcastle.
Twice voted the Football Writers’ Association Player of the Year, he was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2005 and the following year he was voted the fifth greatest player in Liverpool’s history by a worldwide poll of supporters.
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