He'll never be quite remembered alongside our great managers but what he done at Liverpool is quite often underappreciated. He completely changed the culture of the club, one stained by the likes of Paul Ince & Neil Ruddock and took us right to the brink of winning major trophies again. The man quite literally nearly gave his life to the club and I still wonder what might have been had he not fallen ill in the 2001/2 season. We'd improved each season under him and had just come off the back of winning the 3 cup competitions the previous season - even without Houllier for most of that season we ended up being in the title mix right up until the last few weeks of the season and only narrowly went out in the CL quarters to Leverkusen (who went on to the final) but the following season everything fell apart. A lot of players commented that he was never the same after his surgery.
I was at the Roma game when he returned from his illness and it will go down as one of the best Anfield nights ever. Fowler had just been sold, Anelka was inelligble and Owen injured, leaving us with Heskey as a lone striker needing to win by 2 goals vs an outstanding Roma side - they were Serie A Champions are one of the favourites for the competition. The buzz in the stadium when the news that Houllier was at the ground was incredible and I've no doubt that helped us win that game.
It's almost like the fixture was made in his honour. Real shame to hear the news. A real gent who turned around the whole culture at the club. Unfortunately, he had suffered from health issues since his time as Liverpool manager. RIP Gérard
Seemed like a top man and I thought he was an exceptional manager. Never won one of the big ones, but I loved that team - Hyypia, Henchoz, Carra, Riise, Gerrard, Hamaan, and dare I say even Michael Owen are all club legends and may well not have been without Houllier.
And he brought us Djimi Traore, and who can say that their lives would have been richer without him.