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Liverpool Together

By Frank Cunningham :  29/08/2007 :  Comments (9) :
I am a geriatric blue who has always been blue and whose first match at Goodison was with my Uncle Gus back in 1945, watching my beloved blues beat Blackburn Rovers 2:0 in a wartime Northern League fixture. For almost twenty years thereafter, Goodison on a Saturday afternoon was a preparation for Mass and Holy Communion the next day. After migration to the South of England, my visits to the holy of holies at Goodison were somewhat curtailed but that unfailing allegiance to the cause of the boys in blue never faltered and, at the age of 74, is as strong as it ever was. Indeed I had my say on the decision to move to Kirkby or not. My preference remains locked in the secrecy of the ballot box.

In recent years, however, the bad feeling that has emerged between the Blues and Reds has concerned me somewhat. Commitment to one or the other cause has always been paramount and families divided by their loyalty have regardless been true to each other with the exception of the weekend footie results.

It has become increasingly obvious to me that recenlty there is an increasing reference by Everton supportes to the the so-called 'red shite'. I have to say that this is uncalled for abuse and candidly is out of order.

Tonight at Anfield in the wake of the Rhys Jones murder my fellow citizens stood up to be counted just like the Evertonians who in 1989 stood side by side with their fellow Reds in the wake of the Hillsborough disaster to acknowledge their allegiance to their city and to each other.

In memory of young Rhys, let us shout out loud that commitment and sustain our allegianece to Red or Blue in the absence of unnecessary abuse to our fellows whose hearts perhaps misguidely lie elsewhwere.

The gesture at Anfield on Tuesday night was a genuine expression of the grief and anguish of a united City. Happy 800th birthday, Liverpool, and thank you for your united gesture which is an example to the rest of the world.

Reader Comments

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Kevin O'Regan
1   Posted 29/08/2007 at 09:50:29

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With regards to the tragic events if the past week with young Rhys Jones (all over the news here too), I think Liverpool will need to do a lot of work in the coming months and years in the city and surroundings not just to change the image of the city but to actually change it ?offer alternatives to young people to violence, drink, drugs or gangs.

I think Everton and the other gang can certainly help in that respect but it will take a huge effort on all sides of the social spectrum to make Liverpool an attractive place to live (eg. for footballers) or for investment or whatever kind. Of course, if we move out of the city... But point is, now is the time to discuss these issues with the upcoming year of culture, but it needs more than an image makeover.

Liverpool is not the worst city by any means, but it must be a safe place to live, play and work. And yes it is something which affects Everton FC and the fans and players. ToffeeWeb is maybe not the place but the time is right. We all pray that something like that will never happen again.

JL Slap
2   Posted 29/08/2007 at 15:15:31

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Am I reading this right here............a 74 year old on the internet!!! Ha ha, only messing Frankie, I agree with your sentiments at times like this mate. But when it comes to football arguments/derby days etc then no-one can wind me up quite like a kopite!! They were a touch of class last night & I’ll never forget that away from football that these kopites are my friends, family, workmates, teammates etc. Well done boys.
3   Posted 29/08/2007 at 15:51:47

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Last night truly brought tears to my eyes, and I’m not an emotional chap.

Over the last few years the bond between fans of both sides had deteriorated somewhat, it seems unfortunately it takes something tragic to restore the relationship.

Only in this city. Only in Liverpool. Superb gesture by the club and their fans, makes me proud to be a scouser.
4   Posted 29/08/2007 at 16:52:40

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;ast night showed what football can do. I would like to thank all those at anfield for there respect and genuine efforts shown last night. Only with unity and a high profile will those ppl that acted out this horrible act be brought to justice thank you
Steve Guy
5   Posted 29/08/2007 at 16:14:57

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We don't often (if ever) have a good word to say for Liverpool FC and its supporters. However, their response to the death of Rhys Jones and the appearance of his Mum, Dad and brother prior to the CL match last night was everything that we expect from the City of Liverpool and it's people.

The Club and the Kop showed a great deal of respect to a mourning family and 'respect' is due to them in return for getting football rivalries into perspective and focussing on what really mattered.

6   Posted 29/08/2007 at 18:45:42

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Respect to the red side for the show of unity. Let’s hope the city can pull together and weed out these destructive types.

I think Kevin’s post hit the nail on the head. It’s very emotional and heart warming to see people unite in grief at the senseless loss of a young blue, but now we need to unite against the anti-social and criminal disease that has infected our country. Of course it’s not just Liverpool, it’s the whole country!

I hope that Rhys’s death will be a wake up call to all of us.

Whilst the family will never fully get over this, I am sure that they took some comfort in the public’s unity. Full credit again to the dignified way in which the red and blue sides of the city have reacted to this awful tragedy.
Dave Wilson
7   Posted 29/08/2007 at 21:08:16

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just like to echo the above views

Liverpool fans have taken a bit of a buffeting in the last year or so

but we all saw what they are really about last night
Proud of the enemy ? well yes Iam actually
robert carney
8   Posted 29/08/2007 at 22:17:43

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What a wonderfull message sent out to the world last night.

The people of Liverpool over the last five days have paid a fitting tribute to a young and innocent eleven year old.

The quicker this city and the people who are paid to look after us stamp down on criminality the better.

Rest in peace Rhys, let your life not be in vain.
9   Posted 30/08/2007 at 00:02:27

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An old Evertonian (since passed) who lived in my home town of Ballarat in Australia, once told me that Everton/Liverpool was a ’friendly’ rivalry, and that whilst passionate, it never really got too nasty.

His wife is a Manc (blue) and she always avoided that derby because of the vitriol associated with it.

I know it would sadden the old fellow to see our derby go the way of the Manchester, or Tyne/Wear derby. So I’m glad that the two sides of the city can still stand together - even if does take a tragedy to make it happen.

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