Author Topic: That Place, we call home  (Read 1705 times)

Offline CHOPPER

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That Place, we call home
« on: February 14, 2020, 05:18:01 PM »
https://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2020/feb/14/shared-red-fury-how-klopp-weaponised-anfield-to-make-liverpool-unstoppable


Shared red fury: how Klopp weaponised Anfield to make Liverpool unstoppable


Pep Guardiola calls it That Place. Lionel Messi cried in the dressing room the last time he was there. It isn’t hard to see why Anfield gets under people’s skin.

Even the journey there has a distinct tone and texture, something to do with the angles of the place, the topography of a port city, the way the light beyond the houses carries a sense of being at the end of things. It’s there in the way the streets melt into closes and dead ends, funnelling the crowd one way. There’s never any doubt where you’re headed. Or these days, what’s going to happen when you get there.



The weaponising of Anfield: this has been a significant part of Liverpool’s extraordinary success in the last year. It is also a good way of trying to understand it. Because make no mistake, this is still pretty hard to get your head around. Most sporting triumphs seem to correspond to a familiar story type. Football has always been a business of comedy, tragedy, farce and the rest. The history of Manchester United through the Busby and Fergie years still has the feel of an epic family saga: power, succession, patriarchs, and in the post-godfather vacuum a lineage of sweating, weak-chinned Fredos.

How about Liverpool? The most interesting thing about the current run is the way it goes beyond the everyday rules, has become fantastical. A woman in Buenos Aires has learned how to fly. A snowman that can bench-press 400lbs has been discovered. And a football team in the north-west of England have won 34 of their last 35 league games. Welcome to Jürgen Klopp’s Liverpool: an exercise in magic realism.

We have of course seen extreme success quite recently. Manchester City’s brilliant team of the last two years reached a hundred points and was in some ways a more beautiful machine. But this is something else. Should Liverpool beat Norwich on Saturday they will be 25 points clear at the top. Nobody has ever done this before. How do we respond to it?

Either way you keep coming back to Anfield, not so much a fortress as a tangible presence, a place Liverpool’s players seem to carry around with them like a mobile battery pack, and arguably the Premier League player of the year in its own right. The basic numbers are wild. Liverpool average three goals every home league game. They’re on a run of 11 and a half hours without conceding. Look at the fixtures and it is conceivable they could end up the first team to win every home league game in a season.


Beyond this, there is the feeling of the place. All grounds have their shadows, their lines of power. With Anfield there is a sense right now of an uninterrupted communion taking place, of watching the action through that shared compound eye, the players running through a haze, like men playing football on the deck of a fireship.

This is of course self-sustaining, self-mythologising, and deeply schmaltzy. But then good things often are. And Anfield hasn’t always been like this. It has been quiet at times, even a little angsty. Its re-gearing has been deliberate and brilliantly staged.

Certainly Klopp has helped. In time the draw with West Brom two years ago might come to look like a staging post. That was the game when Klopp forced his players do that linked-hands salute to the Kop, a moment where he became suddenly the embarrassing uncle who makes you all sing at Christmas, but who actually knows what’s good for you and doesn’t care what it looks like.

Klopp makes remarks about supporters leaving early. Klopp talks about the essential power of home. Even his style of play fits the staging. Liverpool are above all a thrillingly physical team, and all the more so in that nexus of shared red fury. It’s no accident 11 members of that supremely coherent squad have never actually lost at home. It is currently two and a half years since anyone beat Liverpool at Anfield when Jordan Henderson was in the team . This is unexpected.


But it is also the end of a process. Like a lot of those grand old English grounds Anfield has always been an energy source, a place of restless power, of something that wants to be released. For owners as competent as FSG every part of the club is a potential point of leverage, an edge to be gained.

So it has become with the ground. Staying put and making it work was always a brilliant decision. Enlarging it now might be another, although care is required. The weaponising of Anfield: this has also been a delicate business, a balance of emotion and economics, memory and desire.

It is also a point of contrast with others. So many top-tier clubs have found that home has become parasitic, a drain, an obstacle to be overcome. The Emirates has spent 15 years trying to get over itself. West Ham play football in a shopping centre. Old Trafford, which has its own vast reserves of energy, has become a dark star. Anyone buying that place now needs to go around with a priest and a ju-ju man flushing out the zombies and the poltergeists, waving their warlock stick, chasing the ghouls from the eaves.

The sense of place is one of those things that is supposed to have died in football, its power dissipated by remote fandom, and the feeling of a sport being desiccated into an arm of athletic science.

Anfield suggests something else. An edge has been found here, and an engine for this remarkable team. Games will no doubt be lost on the way, but the title race already feels like an extended lap of the bases. When the final stroke does fall, how much more fitting if it could come at That Place.
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Offline Sons of pioneerS

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2020, 05:27:43 PM »
I enjoyed that.  :)
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Offline Thepooloflife

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2020, 05:38:32 PM »
Simply brilliant - Barney Ronay.....quite like him.

Offline Alan_X

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2020, 05:49:01 PM »
Moved to the Main Board. Thanks for the heads up Chops.
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Offline Red Berry

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2020, 05:58:48 PM »
Klopp forced the players to link arms in front of the Kop after West Brom?  ???
Jürgen Klopp does not adapt to English Football.  English Football adapts to Jurgan Klopp.

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Offline Alan_X

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2020, 06:00:02 PM »
Yes - and was mocked for it.
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Offline Vladi Legend

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2020, 06:03:01 PM »
It continues to go unmentioned that the Kop hasn't sat down since 2018. There's just so much expectation around the place at the moment.
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Offline Red Berry

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2020, 06:03:11 PM »
Yes - and was mocked for it.

I know he was mocked for it. I was never under the impression Klopp forced the players to do it though. Makes it sound like a ritual humiliation  which was never the impression I had at all.
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Offline CHOPPER

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2020, 06:03:50 PM »
Cheers Al.

There is something about our ground that, seriously, no other has or can ever be like.

Little story. The morning after the night before in a square in Madrid, me and the lads, we're back on the ale on the sunday and I, topped up again, started going on abar the fans, how we are all so closely knitted together and the ground, the ground being the catalyst for what we are "its a living breathing thing" (I remember saying and got ragged for ELO)when we fill it so, anyway, I go on this long(and pissed) speech about our ground, I start blubbering like a baby. Me mate comes back with the ale, "whats he crying about" he asks, the lads reply the ground. "Soft c*nt" was the reply.

20 minutes later, after everyone having a go abar their emotional reminisce about the ground, we're all blubbering and hugging.


I fucking love us, and I fucking love our ground.
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Offline Thepooloflife

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2020, 06:14:04 PM »
Cheers Al.

There is something about our ground that, seriously, no other has or can ever be like.

Little story. The morning after the night before in a square in Madrid, me and the lads, we're back on the ale on the sunday and I, topped up again, started going on abar the fans, how we are all so closely knitted together and the ground, the ground being the catalyst for what we are "its a living breathing thing" (I remember saying and got ragged for ELO)when we fill it so, anyway, I go on this long(and pissed) speech about our ground, I start blubbering like a baby. Me mate comes back with the ale, "whats he crying about" he asks, the lads reply the ground. "Soft c*nt" was the reply.

20 minutes later, after everyone having a go abar their emotional reminisce about the ground, we're all blubbering and hugging.


I fucking love us, and I fucking love our ground.
;D made me chuckle - totally agree about Anfield

Offline S

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2020, 06:16:50 PM »
Great piece.

Barney Ronay is always worth reading.

Offline Perham

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2020, 06:31:34 PM »
So glad we never moved in to some soulless corporate bowl. The power of the ground is so strong right now. I don't get to many games but even watching at home I can feel it sometimes especially on nights like the semi final last year.
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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2020, 07:59:58 PM »
So glad we never moved in to some soulless corporate bowl. The power of the ground is so strong right now. I don't get to many games but even watching at home I can feel it sometimes especially on nights like the semi final last year.

It is an incredible place, just walking up is something magical. I have watched countless games over my 50 odd years of supporting the Reds and most are lost in the mists of time, but 3 stand out because of the supporters and the ground. When we lost the league to Leeds the ground rose as one to salute them, something that would never happen anywhere else. St Etienne, my God the Kop was a living being that night and Chelsea 2005, never had my ears actually hurt at a football match. Being a Liverpool supporter is such a privilege but to be inside the ground when we raise the roof is a humbling and exhilarating experience

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2020, 08:04:03 PM »
Great article Chops.

Funnily enough an interesting piece with the big boss on Anfield today.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-owner-john-w-henry-21496210

Offline jack witham

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2020, 08:28:40 PM »
I have been going to Anfield for 59 years now, dont get to go as much now as I used to.
But every time I walk in the ground I still get that same buzz as I did when I was 7 years old.
I know the atmosphere can be a bit hit and miss at times but when the crowd are on it
there is no better place in the world to be.
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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2020, 08:42:45 PM »
That article should be stuck on the wall next to the THIS IS ANFIELD sign and no-one should be allowed to pass under it until it has been read. It might mean kick-offs are delayed a bit but so what.
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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #16 on: February 15, 2020, 12:57:37 AM »
Great piece by Barney thingio. Thanks Chopps.

It got me searching back for some of the pieces we at A4E wrote back in 2001 to try to resist what was the seemingly overwhelming urge by so many fans [principally of the KopTalk internet variety] to support Rick Parry's determination to quit Anfield and build the Parrybowl.


Also a visit to the old site which incredibly is still available online makes for fascinating reading

http://web.archive.org/web/20010330184059/http://www.anfield4ever.co.uk/


As it is the following piece seems to have been the first one we wrote against the proposed move and it clearly reveals the depth of our feelings:



IT'S JUST NOT THE SAME GROUND


As the craving for our new Mecca reaches virtual desperation stakes in some quarters, the pro-movers' old chestnut - that of Anfield no longer being the same as it was - is to be found surfacing with increasing regularity. Why scarcely a single pub toilet throughout Merseyside is safe from these Rick Parry stalwarts as they reflect, arms propped against urinal walls, on the stream of golden wisdom flowing from them.

"If yer ask me like, it's not been the same since they stopped serving Higgies pale ale in the Boys Pen Lizard Lounge. Two beakers of the stuff and yer could get smashed out yer head. Nectar it was to us young lads. I've not been near the place since thee banned it. It's just not the same ground. A move's the only answer yer know."

I mean, have these guys never heard of evolution? Or Bacardi breezers for that matter?

Of course, Anfield is different now to what it was twenty years ago. And it was also different fifty years ago from what it was twenty years ago. And so on and so forth since the place began life as merely a glorified field for vagrant Evertonians. The point is that despite - and indeed just as crucially because of - all these changes this 'place' we all speak of is still Anfield. It IS still the same place. Whatever its current manifestation, whatever outward guise it now presents to the world at large, its name remains one of the most legendary in the world of club football. It resounds in ALL football circles. Nobody should ever underestimate the significance of that.

And yet there seems to be widespread confusion over this very straightforward concept which is extremely puzzling. It is as if the inherently flawed and actually rather pompous observation - that Anfield is not the same place as it was - constitutes some sort of argument against staying. As if each of these perceptions of what is the "old" Anfield constitute the definitive one.

"It's not as I remember it so it ain't worth saving."

Really?

And what about the foregone legions whose perception of the Kop was when it was simply an ash bank? Or those slightly later ones who recall it before it had a roof? Might they not have felt similarly disenchanted about the "classic" sixties Anfield in comparison to theirs?

In reality the very opposite to what these people state is actually the case. Each individual's own freeze-frame of Anfield - as precious as they may rightly be to the person concerned - matters not at all in the big picture. Not even Rick Parry's or Gerard Houllier's. What matters is Anfield as an absolute in itself. As an entity - warts and all. It is that vital principle which lies at the core of this club of ours.

The rest follows from that.

The very fact it has changed so much since its humble Evertonian origins lies paradoxically at the heart of the argument for why we should stay. If the current Anfield was say a mere twenty years old and had remained the same throughout that period then it is doubtful if the place could muster a modicum of support in the face of the hue and cry for somewhere newer, bigger and better. Certainly not amongst us at Anfield4ever. The cement would still be wet, the bonds still very much in their infancy.

Of course, none of this is the case. The fact is Anfield is one hundred and eight years old. It has been our home for generations. Fathers and sons. Great grandfathers and great grandsons. Such lineage matters enormously. More than can ever be represented in mere words alone, no matter how hard we may have tried.

The very nature of the changes it has witnessed since it was that humble muddy field are precisely what separates football grounds like Anfield from other architectural edifices. It is one of the reasons why these places literally cry out to us - their current custodians [for that is all we are] - for us unequivocally to cling to them. They are part of us and us them. We each of us belong to the other. To that same entity which is our football club. Just as do all those past legends who haunt their hallowed corridors and pitches. We move and all that is cast aside. For good.

These are places that have evolved with us. It is what makes them unique. Of course they change. Just as we all change. We still remain the same entity though. So too does a football ground. As society forces its own transformations onto our lives so it does the same to football grounds. Those changes are at once completely irrelevant yet also utterly integral to the role these irresistible concoctions of steel, concrete and grass perform in we fans' existence.

Simply because we are entering a period where the ethos of the disposable commodity so totally dominates almost every aspect of our lives does not mean we should extend such shabby principles to our football grounds. The advent of the "throwaway society" is not some carte blanche signal to toss a major chunk of our very being onto the scrap-heap along with everything else in this grimy, money-ridden, godforsaken era we happen to be living through.

In particular, you do not desert somewhere as unique and as steeped in football history and vital local folklore as Anfield merely because such moves appear to have become vogue in some peoples' eyes. THE home of modern football fandom should not be destroyed just because its current caretaker happens to have somehow become deluded into believing a new ground is the only way forward for a club of our pedigree.

As you will be aware, the fundamental gist of the A4E argument has been that we don't want to desert our heritage and tradition. Contrary to what some have levelled at us, this by no means signifies that we are not interested in success for Liverpool Football Club. The opposite in fact. Indeed, who is to say we might not be more successful if we stayed and expanded? And think how sweet that success would taste if it were not tainted with the blood of an innocent football ground.

By the same token, if some fans ARE willing to trade in their heritage then that is their prerogative. We respect them their choice. We simply don't agree with it. In fact we vehemently disagree. The fact that they seem to be in the majority is no proof that they are any more right than someone who voted for Tory Blair back in the day. Bandwagons are compelling things. They can distort real objectivity.

We do not claim that is necessarily the case here. Nor do we claim sole ownership in the objectivity stakes. The fact remains, however, it could be the case. Take the Blair scenario as an analogy. Those with true Socialist ideals could see through Blair and his eastern Scottish cronies years before they came to power. They could never accept the man nor those cronies nor the compromises they stood for. A majority - many of whom now claim otherwise - were sucked in by the man and his gloss. Those against the man were in a minority then.

As we, indeed, now appear to be.

As it happens, our desire to stay at an expanded Anfield is almost totally instinctive. Quite simply, we have not been seduced by what is on offer. Nor are we in the least bit impressed by the financial myths put forward by Rick Parry and his cohorts. Our cold and experienced logic tells us that at best any increased returns would be so relatively marginal as to be virtually irrelevant. At worst there always remains the possibility if football loses its current vogue that the move could actually lead us into oblivion. Indeed, the only argument that has anywhere near touched us is that which concerns the exclusion of young Reds from our current restricted capacity ground. Our answer to that is we must accommodate such future lifeblood at an expanded Anfield and permit them like us to sample their birthright.

Any other arguments of grandeur or such like leave us cold. We place infinitely more value on the preservation of our home. To us Anfield is priceless. With it, Liverpool oozes greatness. Effortlessly. Without it we become just like any other club with a sparkling new bowl. The changes to Anfield and the fact that the atmosphere is currently to be found wanting matter not. That is not guaranteed to improve wherever we are. In fact given a vibrant team pouring forward once again, we would suspect that a packed Anfield would remain a better bet than most places to produce a fitting atmosphere.

The fact is atmospheres depend on what is happening on the pitch. Not which stadium you're in. Many diehards from the sixties reckon that Anfield in the seventies was shite compared to the sixties. On reflection, having spanned both decades, I would say the essence of what they're saying - as it certainly was never shite - is probably right. What matters though is what Anfield - quiet or noisy - represents.

And that, in simple terms, is our heritage.

Because we stick to this viewpoint some people accuse us of arrogance. I suppose it depends on one's definition but what we try to do each time is not be bland with our articles and answers. We feel Anfield deserves more than a glib remark and so we attempt to develop an argument to support our stance. Call us apologists if you wish but I guarantee you that everything we say about the pivotal significance of our ground to the future well being of this club of ours we happen to believe to be true. We would not pour so much into it if we were simply playing at it.


Perhaps it is only when you have bought into the fact that Anfield is essentially an emotional concept at the core of LFC's very being that you can also begin to comprehend from where we are coming and see why we have never once wavered from our stance. With so many unwilling even to contemplate such nebulous ideals, it seems that a divide will remain over the importance of our Anfield home. The reality, as we see it, is that we shall almost certainly lose this battle. Our overwhelming dread is that in the final analysis if Rick parry gets his wish and Anfield is no more, then EVERY Red will have lost the war.

Anfield4ever  http://web.archive.org/web/20010330184059/http://www.anfield4ever.co.uk/
Alan Edge, Will Melia, Tim Kelly
« Last Edit: February 15, 2020, 01:32:00 AM by Timbo's Goals »

Offline Timbo's Goals

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #17 on: February 15, 2020, 01:18:11 AM »
Bloodyhell. Here's another piece which reveals just how emotive an issue the proposed desertion of our Anfield home was for the likes of myself. Revealingly it contains an encounter I'd completely forgotten about which reading it back just now made me feel quite ill as one para of it relates when I once met with a very prominent Anfield groundstaff management figure who I assumed at the time would naturally have supported our stance and yet my pleas for his support were met with a dismissive disdain for the very shrine in which we were standing as I talked with him. Fuckinghell. Same guy is still there now and fawns over the place publically. Jeez.




THERE ARE PLACES I REMEMBER

I pre-warn you. This is another lurching ramble about our ground and its pivotal significance to Liverpool Football Club. So what’s new, you might say? Yeah, I suppose you’re right. There again, what else can an utterly devoted Anfield lover like myself write about in the midst of the nightmare facing us? Indeed, what else matters so long as this particular issue hovers over us like a mamba waiting to strike? The dread of leaving our home has pre-occupied me for months now and has scarcely left me in that time. In most other things I am merely going through the motions. I am writing this particular piece on the eve of the LFC’s confirmation of their intention to desert their home. They have presented their plans to the local residents. Some sort of move to somewhere other than our home now looks a certainty.

I feel SO sad as the strains of Anfield’s last post draw ever nearer.

Even prior to this latest development, the little grunts and leaks that have kept surfacing these past few months have been sufficient confirmation for me that minds within the club are made up on the issue. Even those fringe people within the club seem to be privy to the inside information. Unlike us mere supporters left to pounce like ravaging hounds on any snippets that come to light. George Sephton, it seems, has confided that “when” we move he will retire. I, myself, met a senior member of LFC staff who, pointing at the Kop towering behind him, casually informed me “he couldn’t wait to leave this monstrosity”. After a twenty minute non-stop manic tirade from me he still hadn’t changed his mind. Rumours from dear old Ged The Red have told us that the new stadium turf people have even been signed up. And now the club have made that vital effort to be seen to be co-operating with the natives. Democracy in action eh? Wonder if Tory Blair is now on the LFC board?

As most of you will already be aware, the general reaction to the pro-stay stuff of Anfield4Ever has tended to be negative. This being not only from the website forums but also from a lot of others we know personally. Indeed, there is good reason to suspect that final consummation of the intention to move will be greeted rapturously by what seems to be a majority. What’s that? So maybe it’s the case that there is democracy after all? Perhaps. It just seems that I’m never fated to be in that majority. Anti-bandwagon Thatcher, anti-bandwagon Blair, Anti-bandwagon move. Whatever next for this particular oddball? Total isolation from his one great enduring love? Who knows?

Despite the steadfastness of my position, the fact remains I have utmost respect for many of those on the forums who advocate moving. Five Bellies, Huyton Red, Dalglish and Dave Neve. To name but a few. No question that they have displayed so much genuine feeling for their club. Not for them sitting on the fence and leaving it to others to do and say things for them. Not for them simply sniping. They are passionate and committed men. They defend vigorously what they believe in. Above all their belief is LFC and that is why they continue to bang their particular drum. Despite our chasmic differences and occasional snipes at each other it has been a privilege to share a platform with these people.

What I cannot do, of course, is ever to share their or Rick Parry’s vision for this club. No mattter how glossy or glitzy. No matter how downright smack-between-the-eyes gungho 21st Century it might turn out to be.

The fact is, I want no part of it if it means deserting our home.

Indeed, the bottom line as far as this particular Red is concerned is that the day we move out of Anfield will be the day my heart will finally break. It will be the day LFC cease to exist as the LFC I have known all my life. As I see it, Liverpool will no longer be the same club and a part of me will die. Most tellingly it will be a part that will never be able to be replaced. Despite what anybody may try to say to the contrary, the point is that for me LFC is Anfield and Anfield is LFC. The two are indistinguishable. Indivisible. Everything else may have changed in football but the presence of Scott and Stubbins, The Saint and Kenny, Shanks and Bob still remains at Anfield Road. I can sense them at every game. They provide comfort and reassurance. They assuage my concerns. The fact they or their spirit is present has always meant everything to me. As those who know me or who have read my book will know, like most others, I am blessed with other constants in my life. Other bases to touch. None, though, have been with me as long as Anfield and LFC. The club and its bottomless spirit have always been there for me. And me for it. From five to fifty. It is some bond. A lifetime thing.

Or so I believed until a few months ago. At that point everything seemed to go haywire. Everything changed.

What I cannot begin to comprehend is why seemingly only a relative few other LFC fans see this scenario in the same way as I do. Or, in the case of those who do not share the same experience as myself, why they cannot begin to understand the depth of feelings on the matter of those such as myself. As the realisation emerged that the ideals of Anfield4Ever were being greeted with such overwhelming apathy from all corners, it has caused me a great deal of heartache. Surely myself and Will Melia and Tim Kelly and Steve Kelly and our views must count for something. Mustn't they? Why the likes of myself and say Peter Evo who have followed this club for so many years have not been afforded scarcely a modicum of respect by many pro-movers for our feelings in this debate is both puzzling and disturbing.

From the very start we have been dismissed as insignificant old farts by many of those wanting to move. It is as if some young fan of twenty or thirty knows and feels MORE about and for LFC than myself and Pete. As if their views are more valid because theirs are more “modern” than ours; more consistent with the way the world at large is developing. Does such fashionability necessarily have to be the way forward? Surely the key to the whole footy club ethos is conserving heritage and tradition. After all, without those pivotal ingredients, what is a football club other than a piece of fancy mortgaged real estate with a bunch of attendant footballers?

We have never dismissed anybody's views in all this debate. We have never said we were right in wanting to stay. Or that anybody else was wrong in desiring to move. We have never claimed any superiority because of the years we have supported the Reds. All we have ever asked is for other fans to acknowledge that perhaps with our experience we might conceivably know something of some real significance to this issue. The nearest we have come to insulting anybody is expressing bewilderment and genuine horror at the eagerness of so many young Reds to move and leave our roots.

Yet, despite our prevailing magnaminity, on numerous occasions we have been crucified by fellow Reds for our stance. At various times we have been labelled out-of-touch, patronising, pompous, pathetic, ignorant and boring.

Peter Evo wrote recently about those characters who whinge about tickets but never get off their arse to do something about getting them. Inevitably, Peter was pilloried for his observation. Why should this be the case? Why can't he point out something like this without getting slated for it? Apart from the fact that in the case of some locals and non-locals alike it happens to be true, surely he has earned the right to comment on stuff he is as expert about as anybody else on this planet? Insults such as Peter received for this truism and the oceans of similar stuff Will Melia and I had to endure on Koptalk really do make me despair for our future as a supporting breed.

What, I put it to you, have such comments got to do with LFC? More to the point what have they to do with the spirit of the "Kop", that living, breathing lifeblood of this club. Its heart the biggest around. Its warmth and humour legendary. Never would it be hostile to its own, particularly its tried and tested own like myself and Evo.

Where, I ask you, is the warmth and humour in the written lashings we have received? Is this a measure of the sort of cold-hearted indifference we can expect from some of our future fans. An indication of the calibre of following the Reds will take with them to their new "home"? Whatever anyone else may feel, I really do feel that when LFC do move, the club that occupies the new ground - wherever that may be - will not be the same club the likes of myself and Evo, Will and Timbo have followed all these years. The lineage will have been terminated and a new one will be about to start. As far as I am concerned, that new one can NEVER - I repeat NEVER - come within a million miles of the Liverpool Football Club that I have grown up with at our Anfield home. The one that has been part of me, and me of it, man and boy for 45 years.

When we desert our home I for one will find it a bitter pill that will not get any more palatable with time. No doubt I shall in due course get round to watching our new team from our new “home”. No doubt, whatsoever, I shall remain a supporter of Liverpool Football Club. I have no say in that particular decision as it was made for me long ago. No way, however, will it be the Liverpool Football Club I have loved for almost half a century.

Today I weep for my LFC.

Alan Edge - 25 September 2000

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #18 on: February 15, 2020, 01:22:06 AM »
And yet another. Christ I was an emotional wreck back then!

 ;D


ANFIELD - A FOOTY GROUND OR AN EMOTION?

So it looks like that's it then, eh? Unless it's a scam of Hansie Cronje proportions, within a few years Anfield will be no more. The consecrated ground of our fathers and their fathers will be but a parking lot or some other atrocity. We, meanwhile, will be ensconced in some soulless concrete bowl in Stanley Park or Warrington perhaps - cheap land and great motorway links lest we forget - like some re-housed Scottie Road refugees.

At the moment I'm not sure which part of this slowly unfolding nightmare is hurting me more. I mean, knowing it's the end of the road for our unique, our so beloved, Anfield is excruciating enough. But then being forced to witness the relish with which many Liverpudlians appear to be greeting the proposals is like having the knife twisted by your own flesh and blood. Christ, benign impassiveness would be bad enough but knowing so many are literally frothing at the mouth in anticipation of the move…

Where is our loyalty for god's sake?

Our solidarity? Our passion for those things which we should hold so dear? Are we all still Scousers at heart or have we lost those qualities that once made us such a unique breed? Has apathy replaced the sheer resoluteness and zest that once pulsed through our veins?

People are often saying Anfield has lost much of its passion on match days. Judging by the way the bulk of its supporters seem to have greeted the news that a major chunk of our birthright is about to be snatched from us, I think we can begin to see why that is.

Okay, so I know that many are saying they will be sad to leave. Sure they say it's regrettable. Sure they claim they would prefer to stay. Yet there, lurking at the end of every sentence, is always that little 'but' word and that sparkle of sheer wondrous anticipation in their eye at the prospect of us having the biggest and the best. That fairy-tale panacea to all our Nineties woes. It contrasts starkly with the moistening in my own eyes. Or perhaps mocks is the more appropriate word in some instances.

Think of the future they all try to advise me. Competing with the best. We've got to do it. The future is ours. All those extra fans. The locals will be able to go, too. There'll be plane-loads from Norway, train-fulls from the Smoke, bus-loads from Timbuktoo. And anyway, Anfield's not the same anymore. Once the Kop went that was it.

Well, I'm sorry. I don't share those clinical pragmatic views. The business view. The logical view. The view from Stanley Park.

Myself? Well, I'm just very sad.

You see, I don't believe in these dream tickets. I don't buy into all this grass being greener just down Arkles Lane. How can anywhere be greener than Anfield for Christ's sake? Anfield is the greenest place in the world. Always was, always will be as far as I'm concerned. It is home to my most treasured memories. A major part of my life. Why should I want to leave it to help our new regime chase some mythical dollar in some soulless concrete bowl?

The truth is, Anfield is an emotion. It is a concept. It is not simply a football ground. It captured my heart forty odd years ago and I loved it then as I love it now. Who knows, despite all its changes and its warts perhaps I'm even more attached to it now than I was then. The bottom line is that the heart it captured back then will never ever desert it and will never ever embrace anywhere else. Anfield is LFC and LFC is Anfield as far as I'm concerned. At the moment I cannot and will not see it any other way.

Alan Edge - 29 June 2000

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #19 on: February 15, 2020, 03:56:03 AM »
Cheers Al.

There is something about our ground that, seriously, no other has or can ever be like.

just like that Tri-Kloppiced titted....

bird from Total Recall.
Nice lil read that
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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #20 on: February 15, 2020, 06:40:39 AM »
Great posts Timbo, and I'll be checking out that site.

I was always against leaving Anfield as well; those Hicks years were among the most stressful for many reasons, with the thought of leaving Anfield chief among them. I even toyed around with the idea of long, destructive losing runs, or even being relegated, to prevent the move (well, I was younger and dafter back then). My sigh of relief when FSG announced we would not be moving, must have been heard around the city. I think I still catch echoes of it on quiet nights.

Love Anfield; love the bones and bricks of it. I've stood and sat in every stand and every corner over the years, and I love it all. Of course it has changed, and many bits have been rebuilt and redeveloped and relaid, but people who make the Trigger's Broom accusation fail to understand the concept of the genius loci.

They forget that every great night that has played out there, every sought-for goal and magic move, every roar and song and cry; all the hopes and dreams, all the wins and losses, all the tears and all the loss, are seeped into something more than the prosaic fabric of the place. They are there in the soul of the place, and they can be tapped, when needed. No-one really understands how, but it's true nevertheless.

That's not something you can box up and take with you if you move ground.

I don't get to go much nowadays, party due to being busy but also because tickets are so hard to get. I miss it, of course. But I know that even if I'm not there, Anfield is still there, and hopefully someone equally passionate is there in my stead, being infected and enlivened and entranced by the joy and magic of the place. And that's worth something.

(Still jealous of the  lucky bastard, though)
"So that is where you'll find me; in the dust and the desolation, the gaps and the ghost towns. The eerie empty places and lost turns of the world"

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Re: That Place, we call home
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2020, 01:30:59 AM »
Great posts Timbo, and I'll be checking out that site.

I was always against leaving Anfield as well; those Hicks years were among the most stressful for many reasons, with the thought of leaving Anfield chief among them. I even toyed around with the idea of long, destructive losing runs, or even being relegated, to prevent the move (well, I was younger and dafter back then). My sigh of relief when FSG announced we would not be moving, must have been heard around the city. I think I still catch echoes of it on quiet nights.

Love Anfield; love the bones and bricks of it. I've stood and sat in every stand and every corner over the years, and I love it all. Of course it has changed, and many bits have been rebuilt and redeveloped and relaid, but people who make the Trigger's Broom accusation fail to understand the concept of the genius loci.

They forget that every great night that has played out there, every sought-for goal and magic move, every roar and song and cry; all the hopes and dreams, all the wins and losses, all the tears and all the loss, are seeped into something more than the prosaic fabric of the place. They are there in the soul of the place, and they can be tapped, when needed. No-one really understands how, but it's true nevertheless.

That's not something you can box up and take with you if you move ground.

I don't get to go much nowadays, party due to being busy but also because tickets are so hard to get. I miss it, of course. But I know that even if I'm not there, Anfield is still there, and hopefully someone equally passionate is there in my stead, being infected and enlivened and entranced by the joy and magic of the place. And that's worth something.

(Still jealous of the  lucky bastard, though)

Lovely post Ghostie. I'm lucky enough to still go but I've always maintained that any footy club but most certainly a club of such deep emotion such as ours is not simply about those who go but also encompasses all those whose heart lies within Anfield, wherever they may be.

Like yourself, I was shaken to the core by the original desire of so many to quit our home. I simply could not comprehend it. And like yourself, the relief I felt when FSG decided to stay and expand was immessurable.

 :)