Losing at Anfield under normal circumstances is forgivable, never nice but forgivable. No matter how shit Liverpool are, they always make a visit to Anfield a hard game for United. They raise their game, play out of their skins and all other cliches that can and will, be recited ad nauseum over the next couple of weeks whilst Liverpool celebrate winning their first title in twenty four years. Today, United had seven corners to Liverpools two. United who for the last few years have taken corners like an articulated lorry, never looked like threatening a stout home defence whilst Liverpool, scored from their first corner on three minutes after Tom Cleverley ducked out of the way of a goalbound Daniel Sturridge header. This was a bad goal to concede but there was plenty of time to regroup and put some sustained pressure on the Liverpool goal. For the next ninety two minutes (obviously including injury time), United ‘enjoyed’ 57% possession compared to Liverpool’s 43%. To paraphrase Samuel Johnson though, statistics like ‘patriotism, is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings’, but these statistics make things even worse. Despite Liverpool not playing brilliantly, despite United’s superior possession and corners, Liverpool deserved this win. Since the final whistle I’ve heard David Moyes say ‘I thought we played well, as well as anytime this season’. I’m only hoping Moyes is presenting a positive front for the media and not truly believing that himself. I can’t believe he would have said the same to the United players in the Anfield changing room post match. I remember Sir Alex saying after United lost at Maine Road in 2002 that ‘we should have let the fans in the changing room after that performance’. I could easily say the same about this disgrace of a showing. The United players who turned out for this game should be locked in a darkened room and shown a video of United/Liverpool matches from the 80’s and 90’s.
Liverpool never looked in any danger during the match barring isolated moments like Robin Van Persie’s attempt on 87 minutes which went wide of the Anfield Road goal and a Ryan Giggs header on 69 minutes which forced Liverpool’s new keeper, Simon Mignolet into a save (I’m really scraping the barrel with that one). If United had lost to Liverpool due to some rank bad luck, prime example being the defeat in the FA Cup in January 2012, I could stomach this loss. I’ve heard some people say that referee Andre Marriner had a bad game and whilst he wasn’t brilliant, I’ve seen far worse. For all that, blaming the referee for United’s defeat and performance today is a cop out. It could even be said that the team selection could be blamed but Moyes is still getting to grips with the job. How Moyes could not even include Shinji Kagawa in the squad whilst having the lightweight Ashley Young starting and the truly abysmal Nani on the bench is mystifying. This was a pathetic performance from a group of players who mostly, have no idea of the significance of this fixture. Liverpool players whilst obviously not at the standard of United’s, do at least know what this match means and always play accordingly. Over the years, I’ve walked out of Anfield in various states of delirium, paranoia and anger depending on what has just occured in the stadium or what could potentially occur en route to Lime Street or through Stanley Park. I don’t recall ever walking out of Anfield as angry and as disillusioned as I did today. As poor as United performance was, the support in the Anfield Road end today was nearly as bad. Manchester United seem determined to give coveted away tickets to prize plums for matches like todays. There was a time when a visit to Anfield was one made by proper lads combined with decent and knowledgable straight goers. This ain’t the case now. The Anfield Road end had a depressing amount of half ‘n’ half scarf wearing half wits as well as other people giving the impression that they were at their first and last game of the season. They’ve all heard the SKY sports hype about this fixture and then stand there like visitors to a fuckin’ zoo waiting for their fellow Man U fans to make a noise in this most fabled of matches. What they don’t realise is that the very people who make this atmosphere are sat in a pub in a Manchester suburb watching the game because they are there in favour of them. Liverpool had a minutes applause to commemorate the one hundredth anniversary of the birth of Bill Shankly. I’m well aware that Liverpool football club love nothing more than a good maudlin tribute to one thing or another and an opportunity for the McDonalds Kop to display a mosaic. Even so, was there any need for a sizable faction of United fans in the Anfield Road end to openly and gratuitously disrespect a man who never shown anything but respect to our club during his lifetime? Had they read some manual where they score top red points for booing anything, absolutely anything to do with Liverpool football club? The irony being that people wearing the half ‘n’ half scarfs were booing as vociferously as anybody else, the mind boggles…
Thanks to Chris at http://www.jamiesoncontracting.co.uk/ for his help in sorting out tickets for this match
3 thoughts on “…To Which A Scoundrel Clings – Liverpool, September 1st 2013”
Half and half scarves. Twat anybody seen wearing one. Most of all firm up, and turn over any cunt seen flogging ’em. I know you Murph, although you don’t know me. So this may involve upsetting some of your associates. They just like United, the boys on Sir MBW will exploit any dick ‘ead. That once was a way to fund your way into the game. It’s different now. Their money is all that matters to everyone in ‘the business’. Shankly. If there is one person who genuinely has anything bad to say or do about him, must be, to put it mildly, fucking crackers. That man loved football more than twin scarf wearing cunt could ever understand. He loved Liverpool. He made us laugh at the expense our club(s). Why laugh.Cos he knew more than most that football is supposed to fun. Respect your views Murph, but two iffy performances does not, a season make. Just in case you find who I am, I plead mercy if apprehended.
Regarding half ‘n’ half scarves, I don’t blame the swagmen. I blame the twats who buy the stuff. If nobody bought the scarves, they’d soon stop making them. The more worrying thing is that there are people around who actually feel safe wearing them things. As for two iffy performances, I’m one of the few people whio thought United played alright against Chelsea. As I said above, losing at Anfield is forgivable, it’s not the defeat I’m annoyed about as such as the spineless manner it happened