Player profile

John Arne Riise

Birthdate: 24 September 1980
Birthplace: Molde, Norway
Other clubs: Aalesund (1994-98), Monaco (1998-2001), AS Roma (2008-11), Fulham (2011-14), APOEL Nicosia (2014-15), Delhi Dynamos (2015-)
Bought from: Monaco
Signed for LFC: £4m, 20.06.2001
International debut: 31.01.2000 vs. Iceland
International caps: 110/15 (64/6 at LFC) - 22.03.2013
Liverpool debut: 12.08.2001
Last appearance: 30.04.2008
Debut goal: 24.08.2001
Last goal: 03.04.2007
Contract expiry: 01.07.2008
Win ratio: 56.9% W: 198 D: 70 L: 80
Honours: FA Cup 2006; League Cup 2003; Champions League 2005
Total games/goals opposite LFC: 5 / 0
LFC league games/goals: 234 / 21
Total LFC games/goals: 348 / 31

Player profile

Riise was bought to Monaco for £700,000 from Norwegian second division side Aalesund in the summer of 1998. After Jean Tigana left Monaco Riise wanted also to look for pastures new. Leeds showed an interest but could not broker a deal with Monaco. Riise was frozen out of the first team but finally it looked like his old mentor Tigana would buy him to Fulham. Liverpool improved Fulham's offer after Riise has agreed terms with the London side and hijacked the deal. Riise benefited from his three-year-stay in France and combined good technique and power. He had no trouble in adapting to the English game and was a tremendous success in his debut season. He helped Liverpool bring in the Charity Shield and the European Super Cup to add to their impressive treble from the previous campaign and in only his second start in the Premier League Riise ran half the length of the pitch to score Reds' last goal in a 3-1 victory over Everton at Goodison Park. Two months later Riise's excellent engine and powerful left foot impressed the club's supporters when he unleashed an incredible shot outside the penalty area that reached 70 mph. (112 km.) before going in off the bar against Manchester United at Anfield. Ripping off his shirt in celebration became his trademark. 

The Norwegian delivered on the attacking front, but sometimes his defensive skills left a lot to be desired so he was also used in left midfield. Following a disappointing 2003/04 when Riise was dropped on occasions and drew a blank in the scoring stakes he played in all but one League game under new boss Rafa Benítez in the 2004/05 season that culminated in the drama that was Istanbul. Riise was actually the only Liverpool player to miss in the penalty shoot-out, but he did provide the superb cross that enabled Gerrard to head in Liverpool's first goal in their astonishing revival.  Riise, anyway made amends a year later for his penalty miss, in the FA Cup final against West Ham. "I asked the manager to let me take the fourth penalty given what happened in Istanbul last year. I was carrying an injury at the time which meant that I couldn't blast the penalty there which I'd normally do. I had to place it and their keeper (Dida) saved it. That was a nightmare, even though we won the cup, it still left me demoralised but I could use the power now. I blasted it down the middle and it flew in, and as soon as it hit the back of the net, I burst into tears. They were stinging my eyes," Riise explained.

Riise lost his way at Liverpool in his last two seasons often exposed by his lack of skill in receiving the ball and delivering it to a teammate with his personal nadir being his own-goal in the 2008 semi-final against Chelsea in the Champions League. Liverpool were heading for a priceless 1-0 win in the first leg when Riise dived to head the ball into his own net at the Kop end in the 90th minute. After eventful seven years of highs and lows at Anfield Riise left for Roma on 18 June 2008. Jamie Carragher said Riise would be missed. "He can be very proud of what he's achieved with Liverpool. He has played nearly 350 games and scored a lot of goals. He's played at a very high level for a long time now. He's never injured and he's a great professional who has always looked after himself." Riise had two decent seasons in Rome before joining his brother Björn Helge at Fulham in July 2011, at last joining the Cottagers after snubbing a move there in favour of Liverpool in 2001. John Arne has been a regular at Fulham and deservedly got a great reception when he returned to Anfield as a visiting player on 1 May 2012 when the Cottagers beat Liverpool 1-0.

Riise appeared in thirty-one Premier League matches and one FA Cup-tie for Fulham in the 2012/13 season. Surprisingly, because he was known for the power of his shooting during his seven seasons with Liverpool, he was still waiting for his first Fulham goal after two full seasons with the Cottagers.

At the end of his three-year contract, Riise was released by Fulham. He had played nearly a hundred matches for the Cottagers in three seasons but failed to score a single first-team goal during that time.

At the start of September 2014 Riise signed a two-year contract with Cypriot club APOEL Nicosia but after winning the league and cup double in his first season his contract was terminated by mutual consent. He then announced he had joined Delhi Dynamos for the 2015 Indian Super League season.

Appearances per season

2001-2002 382015156
2002-2003 373411156
2003-2004 28124035
2004-2005 370515057
2005-2006 326012252
2006-2007 331112148
2007-2008 294110044

A more detailed look at the player's appearances

16Manchester United
15Blackburn Rovers
14Aston Villa
13Bolton Wanderers
12Birmingham City
12Charlton Athletic
11Newcastle United
10Manchester City
9West Ham United
5Wigan Athletic
5Leeds United
4Crystal Palace
3PSV Eindhoven
3Leicester City
3Luton Town
3Sheffield United
3Ipswich Town
2Norwich City
2Real Betis
2CSKA Sofia
2Borussia Dortmund
2AS Monaco
2Dynamo Kiev
2Grazer AK
2AC Milan
2Spartak Moscow
1Vitesse Arnhem
1Steaua Bucharest
1Yeovil Town
1FBK Kaunas
1CSKA Moscow
1Deportivo Sap.
1Sao Paolo
1Maccabi Haifa
1Inter Milan
1Bayern Munich
Total Started/substitutions
296 Started
26 On the bench
52 Substitute
41 Substituted

Goals per season

2001-2002 700108
2002-2003 600006
2003-2004 000000
2004-2005 601108
2005-2006 130004
2006-2007 101215
2007-2008 000000

A more detailed look at the player's goalscoring

TotalGoal minute period
51-15 minutes
416-30 minutes
531-45 minutes
646-60 minutes
561-75 minutes
676-90 minutes
TotalOpen play/Penalty
31Open play

Wartime Appearances / Goals

No records to display.

Stats note

Milestone Appearances

112.08.2001Manchester UnitedMillennium StadiumOther
10002.03.2003Manchester UnitedMillennium StadiumLeague Cup
15021.08.2004Manchester CityAnfieldLeague
25009.04.2006Bolton WanderersAnfieldLeague
30021.04.2007Wigan AthleticAnfieldLeague

Milestone Goals

12324.08.2001Bayern MunichStade Louis IIEurope

Related Articles

Club calls foul over John Arne Riise wage slip email

31 Oct, 2007 by Greg O'Keeffe, Liverpool Echo.More

The John Arne Riise Problem

By "yorkykopite" on 21st of August 2007.More

Look at Riise's new car!

Silly season is upon us, transfer rumours rule the market. LFChistory decided to look at the lighthearted side of summer instead.More

Related Quotes

"I asked the manager to let me take the fourth penalty given what happened in Istanbul last year. That hurt me. I was carrying an injury at the time which meant that I couldn't blast the penalty there which I'd normally do. I had to place it and their keeper (Dida) saved it. That was a nightmare, even though we won the cup, it still left me demoralised but I could use the power now.

"I know my penalty here wasn't a great penalty, but a goal's a goal. I blasted it down the middle and it flew in, and as soon as it hit the back of the net, I burst into tears. They were stinging my eyes. It was just so emotional after what happened last season. This was closure, a chance for me to get revenge and put things right."

Riise made amends in the FA Cup final after missing from the spot during the shoot-out in the European Cup final against AC Milan

"...But after about ten minutes yesterday, we witnessed 'that' moment. We were facing a corner, and the ball was deflected away to the edge of our area. Riise was on to it in a flash, and started thundering down the right flank with Pennant for company. Pennant stayed out wide a drew a defender, Gonzalez was tonking down the left flank and he too drew a defender. Riise turned infield and headed for the goal like a turbo-charged tank. Terry backed off - I swear to God he was bricking it - and Riise just kept steaming forward.

By now, everyone at our end had stood up. Hushed voices could be heard above the hum ... 'Go on, son - keep going John' We knew he was going to shoot, and we also new the chances were that he would probably not just miss the goal, but the crowd as well (in fact, that wouldn't have been hard, as only 17 Chelsea fans turned up). Eventually, Terry decided to confront Riise. Bare in mind here that Riise had been running at full pelt for probably 70 yards, and must have been puffing a bit. He was probably looking for a pass - but Pennant and Gonzalez were decoys, and no other Liverpool player had made up the ground. So as Terry stepped forward to block, Riise from all of 25 yards let fly. In truth, it was not the best ball he has ever hit, but it still flew like a cannon-ball towards the corner.

At this point, our whole end fell silent and held it's breath. Cudicini dived and it appeared he might get to it. But wether it was the power, or the dip, or the swerve, or the fact God is a scouser - he missed it, and the ball flew like a missile into the corner..... cue momentary disbelief. Had this really happened? TOO FECKING RIGHT - and we exploded as one with such noise and passion that it is beyond words. These kind of moments are rare, but frig me with a red hot poker, they are worth waiting for.

When the mayhem had died down, and we were just grinning inanely, some fella shouted out 'Even F*cking Ashley Cole couldn't do that!' - and I think he was right. In fact, I can't remember any full back doing what John did yesterday. That kind of ability is rare indeed. And we should cherish it."

A LFC fan called Shaybo describes John Arne Riise’s goal vs. Chelsea in the 2006 Community Shield


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