Oh to be a football fan. I was stopped by a Sunderland fan at work on Monday who basically thanked me for making his weekend.
Clearly he had failed to notice that it was not me that had made his weekend by sticking six past Newcastle but, what the hell, I’m happy to bask in the associated glory! However this must surely be, schadenfreude wise, be the quickest case of “what goes around comes around” as that evening Aston Villa “Liverpooled” his own team. Still I guess it was fun for him to be smug while it lasted.
The 6-0 clearly was a boost to the confidence for everyone concerned with the club. What made it more pleasing were the circumstances leading up to it. One could have almost forgive the team for not performing given all the “bite” coverage instead they appeared to rise to the occasion, strength in adversity and all that?
As I write the Suarez incident still refuses to go away. I guess it was going to be the way of things as soon as David Cameron, ever one to hypocritically jump of the moral bandwagon, saw fit to open his trap about the incident Later Five Live had some pseudo, trumped up warts and all analysis type documentary that attempted, very poorly, find out why Suarez does what he does as if he was some troubled footballing basket case hewn from the same rock as Cantona, Gascoigne and, if you leave out the being brilliant at football bit, Barton. It’s all absolute nonsense of course and now terribly boring. It’s as if this country can’t accept that foreigners can act and behave in a different way, does it even need to be a foreigner? Possibly so yet no one issues a peep let alone makes an entire radio programme if a player breaks a opponents legs or elbows him in the face. A little bite its a cue for a massive stampede, acres of newsprint, and generally tonnes of bullsh*t. My advice to Luis is next time you get narked? Just smash you elbow into the players face or break his shins it will be less hassle!
Back to today and a local Derby which has ever has a number of issues surrounding it. The media will no doubt make great play of this game being an opportunity for Everton to ensure that they finish ahead of us this season. It’s a lazy and patronising stance. I would suggest that this season Everton have had better, more important ambitions on their minds, ie Europe, than just finishing about us. Moreover it’s just a lazy angle to take. It’s a Liverpool derby so let’s assume that both teams are only concerned about beating each other as if all the other games we play and goals. that are open for us to achieve, don’t matter! I can only speak for myself but although today is always a great day and one where we want to beat Everton overall this year I’ve just been concerned about Liverpool playing better. Whatever Everton have been doing hasn’t really been an issue. If they finish above us his season then, chances are, it’s deserved. End of story.
The other issue is that this is likely to be Jamie Carragher’s last derby. Regardless of the above argument the local issue is poignant this time. Along with Steven Gerrard Carragher is probably be the only local lad playing in red today. Like Gerrard, Carragher is one man club a club from his birthplace. That is rare these days and sadly it might not be too much to say that it’s unlikely that we ever it’s like again. Carragher, along with Gerrard, will, even though we have nothing to play for, ensure that everyone is up for this. Who will do this job when these players retire and, even if they do, will they really have Stevie’s and Jamie’s appreciation of what it means to the fans?
Prediction? It’s been suggested that Everton, in an attempt to ensure that they finish above us, will go for it thus opening the game up which will play into our hands. I think David Moyes is cleverer than that and, besides, I really can’t be bothered to look at the game for this point of view. Suffice to say that if we replicate some of the play we showed at St James Park last week then we will be OK and surely, the light of that result, we will be full of confidence 2-0.