When Manchester United lined up for a pre-season friendly five years ago at Old Trafford, all eyes were on the goal threat of Zlatan Ibrahimovic as the dangerman.
Instead it was a quick-footed Honduran striker who grabbed the headlines, recently signed for £9 million, who announced himself on the world stage.
It may have been a friendly, but the disappointment was one United took seriously, as it indicated that despite spending £60 million on Anderson, Nani, Owen Hargreaves and later Tevez, that work needed to be done. (A year later they could consider that work 'job done' as they lifted the Champions League trophy in Moscow.)
But this August night belonged to David Suazo, who scored twice in a 3-1 win for the visiting Italian side, whose line-up was notable for the inclusion of a young teenager called Mario Balotelli among the substitutes.
Suazo had signed that summer from Cagliari, where he scored a superb 25 goals in 2006-07, and another 15 a year later. It was this form which prompted a tug of war between both Milan clubs and protracted legal battle for his signature, won by the Nerazzuri.
This brace scored at Old Trafford past Edwin van der Sar gave the Italian side real hope that they had bought a gem of a striker who could transport his talents to the biggest stage of them all and carry the club to even greater heights.
Inter did reach great heights, they won the Champions League in 2010. Suazo was nowhere to be seen, dispatched on loan to Genoa, rather than playing a role in Jose Mourinho's treble winning Inter side.
His brace at Old Trafford in an unconsequential game would be the highlight of his Inter career. He scored just eight times in Serie A in his debut season, while his sole contribution in the Champions League was a sending off.
He took until November to register his first goal for the club, against Atalanta, and followed it up by scoring past his former side Cagliari, but by time he scored his last of the season in March, he would be ousted from the team by a young Balotelli.
Balotelli scored four in the season's final stages to help Inter towards the title, and Suazo found himself down the pecking order below Ibrahimovic, Crespo, Julio Cruz, and Balotelli. The £9 million season was fifth choice.
The next season, one summer after his Old Trafford show, he was considered expendable, and loaned out to Portugal with Benfica.
This would prove to be another disappointment, making 12 appearances and scoring four times was a decent enough strike rate, but it wasn't the quantity required. So a year later he found himself back at Inter, and far from Jose Mourinho's plans.
The Special One did not use him, and loaned the striker out to Genoa. He netted on his debut against Inter's rivals AC Milan, but it wasn't enough to stop them slipping to defeat and would be one of just two goals he contributed to the club.
He had the World Cup to look forward to with Honduras of course, but injury interrupted his preparation, and he was only fit to feature in the final game, a 0-0 draw with Switzerland when they were already eliminated after two straight defeats. Another disappointment for him.
It was clear Suazo had lost the momentum he had three years earlier, the move to Inter Milan was just too big for him, and the competition for places had swallowed him up. Just when he needed a miracle to happen, disaster struck.
He suffered an injury which kept him out of the whole of 2010-11. He was still on Inter's books, but was released at the end of the season. He was offered a one-year-deal by Catania, who enjoyed an impressive season finishing 11th in Serie A.
Unfortunately Suazo did not make a contribution, appearing just six times and failing to score. He was released again this summer, and with the transfer window passed, finds himself still without a club.
With Michael Owen in the same position he finds himself in good company, and his injury record will continue to count against him. But at the same age, 32, as the former United and Liverpool striker, he still potentially has something to offer if he can stay fit, and will hope he can find a club sooner rather than later.
For a player whose star shone so brightly five years ago, it's a sad tale to think of what could have been had it not been for the intense competition for places at Inter Milan combined with a poor start in Serie A with the club.
With Liverpool desperate for strikers, surely he couldn't answer the call and haunt Old Trafford once more, could he?
image: © batrax