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It Hurts, Even From Afar

By Kevin Chung :  29/09/2008 :  Comments (22) :
There are times when I feel being an Evertonian really means you have to be born and bred in Merseyside, and have that BLUE BLOOD flowing through your veins from the minute you were born. But unfortunately, I am not as privilege as you "Scousers", because I wasn't born on Merseyside. Heck I'm not even born in the UK. I'm actually a Malaysian-Chinese and have been living my whole life in this country of my birth.

And to say that I was born with Blue Blood in my veins isn't exactly true either. The only way I related to football during my early childhood was because of the name Kevin (I was born in 1973), and everybody called me Kevin Keegan because of that. And I didn't even know Keegan was playing Redshite back then. So I just went along with it.

It was during one fine afternoon, when I was about 8 years old (1984-85), I went to one of my mates house (and his dad is a football player himself and support none other than RS), and they were watching the only program we could get access to back then "BIG LEAGUE SOCCER", and the match on highlight was between then famous Liverpool team against a Blue coloured team.

Growing up, Blue was my favourite colour. And when I asked my mate's dad, who is playing? He replied "Liverpool". I asked, "what about the Blue team?". He said "Oh, that's Everton". It was on that sacred moment that I fell into a deep coma and supported Everton eversince. (And oh, Everton won that match that day, btw).

My point to this whole story is this, as much as all Evertonians who were actually born on Merseyside get hurt everytime we lost to Liverpool, my hurt and my sorrow is 10 times worse than you can imagine. I have prided myself in being an Evertonian living in Malaysia all my life (Since I was 8, now I'm 35), and I tell you, there aren't exactly a great fan base for Everton over here. I am pretty much ON MY OWN. You'll see people who support the big 4 (for obvious reasons), and I'll be the only Evertonian over here.

When Derby day comes, it freaks the hell out of me seeing the likes of Gerrard and Torres tormenting our Everton team. It gets even worse when Liverpool scores or wins the match, and I'll be getting a hell lot of text messages from my RS mates who I wished didn't exist.

And the worse thing is, when I attend Sunday Mass at my local church the next day, the RS supporters would come with their Red Tops to taunt me (everybody in church knows I'm the only Everton supporter here). Even the PRIEST is a RS fan!! Cos after mass he came out with his CASSOCK and removed it in front of me, and it was a bloody RS Jersey he was wearing.

Trust me fellow Evertonians, I get it as bad (or even worse) over here in Malaysia, and I would give an arm and a leg to be with you guys over there. I really would.

So what I would like to say is, I've been supporting Everton since 1985, and went through the whole bad spell throughout the 1990s (except for that FA cup win over MU), and I'm still standing here as an Evertonian, all by myself.

Like they say, One Evertonian is Worth "How Many" Liverpudians?

I am certainly the ONE Evertonian from where I am.


Reader Comments

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Jason Siri
1   Posted 29/09/2008 at 08:02:07

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You are not alone. I am fellow Malaysian myself... started over Big League Soccer - 1982- everyone else in Malaysia and Singapore supports the Red Shites!
Andrew Fletcher
2   Posted 29/09/2008 at 08:20:47

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Believe me, I would swap places with you this season if you want to sit in the stand.
Kevin Chung
3   Posted 29/09/2008 at 09:56:48

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I wished I was that lucky to even experience being in Goodison mate. I wished I was.
Vishal Poorundersingh
4   Posted 29/09/2008 at 10:33:06

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Its almost the same story but only I am from Mauritius. Once a blue always a blue.
Rory Slingo
5   Posted 29/09/2008 at 09:53:35

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Hey Kevin, it?s exactly the same down in Singapore. (I too started supporting the Blues because they wore my favorite color. It?s as simple a decision as that when you?re 10 yrs old ;)

Kopites, wherever they are, will always be gobshites. And if you support Everton, no matter where you live in the world, you will be surrounded by red shite supporters.

In fact, I think it?s worse when you live out of Liverpool because at least the ones there know their history even if they choose to ignore it. The global shites simply have no idea about theirs until they?re lucky enough to meet Blues like us to give ?em a good ?ol ?istory lesson to put them in their place.
Chris Stewart
6   Posted 29/09/2008 at 12:13:06

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I was in the Park End on Saturday and whilst my blood slowly boiled over with what was happening on the pitch, the goings on behind me made me really sad.

Often billed as the friendly derby that divides families, some of the abuse that was being hurled at some of the reds sitting with their blue bretheren beggars belief. I am for partisan behaviour at matches but the luddidites who were screaming MURDERERS at some of reds in the stand was out of line IMHO.

The Stewards did what they could to keep things in check, even when the bickering started amongst the blues themselves.

Its a sad sign of the times where complete segregation is the only way forward for what was the last bastion of passionate yet understanding intra-city rivalry.

My heart sake during the game...because what seemed to be lost on Saturday was more than just 3 points.
Tony Anetts
7   Posted 29/09/2008 at 14:02:40

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To Rory, Kevin and Vishal.

As an Everton supporter since 1966 (born in 1964) and living in Australia for much of my life I share your pain. However, don’t assume that it is harder for us than for those in Liverpool. I have made the pilgrimage to Goodison only twice (once on my honeymoon when I made us go back to Liverpool for a home game after we had already left the UK and were in Italy - but at least she knew what she was getting). On both occasions Everton were terrible and the other team (Coventry and Spurs respectively) played all the football. While I was disappointed, it was still exciting to be there. For the Goodison faithful it was another week of turgid, hideous football that they were paying a fair chunk of their weekly disposable readies to watch.

I actually had people come up to me at the train station after the Apr 2006 Spurs home game once they heard my broad Aussie accent apologising: ’Christ lad, you’ve come all this way to watch that crap - you poor sorry bastard’ or words to that effect.

So, don’t assume that watching late at night is easier than turning up week in and week out. I know that it would hurt me more to watch it live every week and actually ’see’ how little football we play.
Kenneth Kee
8   Posted 29/09/2008 at 15:36:34

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Kevin, it hurt so bad down south in Singapore that I told my wife of 2 years that after the dreadful derby surrender that I may lay off following Everton for a while.

Imagine wearing the royal blue jersey in Singapore where every other chap is either with the RS, Manure or Chelsea. My cousin who follows his Ars(anal), never fails to ask me every Chinese New Year why I am such a loser following Everton. After the derby, its no wonder my jersey goes into hiding, at least for this week.

The funny thing is that 24hours later, here I am looking for sometime positive from David Moyes to whip the lads back into the confident and tightly knit bunch of battlers they once were when he first came in.

My answer to my cousins and all the others on why the illogical passion is that Everton reminds me that life is about ups and downs, uncertainty, the occasional joys (1995) and about family. I run my own Loss Adjusting practice in Singapore and sometimes when business is down, I’m reminded to keep soldiering on just like Everton, on limited budget and a shoestring. David had been an inspiration to my business with his working class hardwork and ethics. Also I guess all the positive comments and display of loyalty to the Blue half of the Merseyside is so incredible that it makes us proud to carry on through thick and thin - a quality my missus would admire me for.
Gordon Blair
9   Posted 29/09/2008 at 16:09:35

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Kev, you may actually be right, I do at least have fellow blues in the office to share the burden.

Just one thing though (from pedants corner) I was 10 in 84-85, and I’m not 35 yet (although I feel 60 after Saturday lunchtime), is Malaysian age worked out in the opposite way to Nigerian age?

So you’re a Malaysian 35 in the way the Yak is a Nigerian 25? ;-)

(I did tell you I was going to be pedantic)

Keep the faith, and look on the bright side, at least there aren’t going to be too many Liege supporters in your neck of the woods.
Kevin Chung
10   Posted 29/09/2008 at 16:34:55

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Gordon, dude... There was a total miscalculation of my age and year in my article. haha.. so sorry.... Now I’m a little confuse myself... it’s either I was 8 and the year was 1981, or it was in 1984-85 and I was a little bit older... Seriously, thanks for "smacking" me in the face with that... showed what a blunder I made... But the jist of the overall article is 100% true though :)
Kevin Chung
11   Posted 29/09/2008 at 16:48:47

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Tony, yeah you?re probably right about that. But you know, I told my wife that the one thing I wanna do before I die is to watch an Everton game live from Goodison one day (or Kirkby, who knows).

So it?s pretty much something I wanna do someday. But the rate of pay that we are getting in Malaysia, and stupid Malaysian Exchange rate, makes it impossible for me to save up enough $$$ to ever make it there. But I?m still hoping.
Jeff Spiers
12   Posted 29/09/2008 at 18:44:37

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To all Blues anywhere & everywhere on this planet & beyond. Yes it hurts, and the sad thing it doesn't get any better. Would I swap places with any RS gobshite? Would I fuck! EFC till I die. And beyond.
Kyle Thomas
13   Posted 29/09/2008 at 21:41:39

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We got plenty of the RS in the USA too. Everywhere I go I run into idiots who think they’re supporting a team from freaking Carlsberg!!! So it goes...

Andy Spence
14   Posted 29/09/2008 at 22:29:32

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Kyle, Kevin, Vishal, Kenneth & Jason
It must be shite putting up with all the comments from the gobshites but always remember this 1 point

While its true, we don't have thier silverware or thier glory
We dont have thier shame either

Keep your chins up lads
Born a blue, live a blue die a blue
Jarrod Prosser
15   Posted 29/09/2008 at 23:56:26

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Same story, here.

About 6 years old in Australia, watching the cup final (only game we got back then) with my mate, who’s favorite colour is red. From that Saturday night onwards, we’ve both been passionate about our respective Merseyside loves.

He was lucky enough to make his pilgrimage to anfield about 4 years ago - to see a derby no less!

Hoping that i get my chance in the very near future. And hoping that you get yours too, Kevin.
Chris Stubbs
16   Posted 30/09/2008 at 01:09:15

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It’s tough being an overseas fan. I was born in Liverpool, brought up there, but moved to Australia 12 years ago. I am now working in Taiwan. No-one here believes the EPL has other teams than the big 4. Also, no-one believes me when I say that RS was not the first team in Merseyside. So, I too have to endure the pain when they lose. But the worst thing is telling people that I was born in Liverpool but don’t follow RS. Oh yes, I also don’t know the Beatles. That;s easier to explain. I dream of a time when it is automatically assumed that being born in Liverpool makes you an Evertonian.
Kevin Chung
17   Posted 30/09/2008 at 01:25:28

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Yes Andy. Always a blue no matter what. And I agree with Jeff too, as I’ll never even consider swapping places with RS. Not a chance.

And Kyle, RS Idiots are everywhere huh? Even in the states. God Damn!

Jarrod, I think you’ll get your chance more likely than me. Our spending power here sucks, and it will take a lotto winning to take me to Goodison one day.

Vishal Poorundersingh
18   Posted 30/09/2008 at 05:59:58

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Being in Liverpool and being an Everton fans its fine coz you can meet many Everton fans to share victories and defeats. But we who are foreign supporters we are among groups of Manure, Chelski, Arse and Shite fans, which made life very difficult. In University when nice looking gilrs knew that I was following the mighty blue they were laughing at me...try to feel the pain its very hard..but still I am very proud of being an Everton Fans. One thing more when my wife and son are behind me I feel more closed to Everton FC. Never mind what will be the outcome of the football match, I will come to Liverpool just to enjoy the atmosphere in Goodison Park, On the streets and the pubs..etc... hope you will be there to welcome me. Thanks
Vincent Siow
19   Posted 30/09/2008 at 08:13:57

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I’m a Toffee from Singapore too!! =)

For Everton fans, the best thing is through thick and thin, we stay Everton fans.

When one day Chelsea, Man Utd, or the Shites get relegated, we’ll see how many supposed fans ditch their jerseys for Man City ones.

Kenneth Kee
20   Posted 30/09/2008 at 12:09:38

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Rory, Vincent, and other Singapore Blues. Maybe its time to meet up and cheer the Blues on. At least we won’t end up singing the blues alone!

We could one day make a pilgrimage to Goodison Park together!
Dennis Aghaisu
21   Posted 30/09/2008 at 13:00:38

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I share all your pain as well as I now live in Germany and grew up in Londond, (first game I saw was in ?83 and I was (actually) 8 at the time - fav colour was also blue and all the other kids were gooner, manure or RS). Although having grown up in London, which is a bit closer to GP than Malaysia(!), I am a little ashamed to say that I have only been to GP once (when shreck made his first appearance back at GP after going to Manure - we got knocked out in the cup that day). However, I was with 3 manure mates and they were shitting themselves for 90mins sat in the middle of everton fans, which at least put a smile on my face, although we lost! Now live in Germany and am surprised that I?ve met a load more Toffees in the expat community here that I ever did in 20 odd years in London - most of them are from Ireland and at least there are people to share the pain with. Made the 3 hour trip to Nuremberg to see big Vic do his super sub thing - was good to see a load of Everton fans at the game. Hopefully we can see the same result in Belgium on Thursday - god I hope we stay in Europe. If we go out we could have a repeat of ?05/06 when the squad completely lost all confidence and we lost 7 out of the first 8 league games of the season and only scored one goal - from the mighty Marcus Bent!! COYB.
Rory Slingo
22   Posted 03/10/2008 at 13:47:29

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@Kenneth Kee
There?s a group of Singapore Blues that meet up regularly every week. Either at Shamus O?Donnel?s in Tras St or if it?s a Sunday game, then Molly Malone?s at Boat Quay. email me and i?ll make sure to include you in the mailing list to meet up for the next televised match. Other stranded S?pore blues out there are welcome to email me as well. []

i made a trip to Liverpool in 2005 in the off season. unfortunately GP was closed for maintainence that day and i couldn?t get into the ground. everything was out of stock at the megastore so i ended up buying a scarf that said Rooney coz there were none left that just said Everton. then the fat arse comes back from his summer hols and sez he?s off :-

i did get a nice big Everton beach towel though. i love the stares from the idiots here who can?t figure out why Chelsea?s badge looks wrong :p

@Tony Annets

Point taken. Actually going to the games week in week out and watching crap displays does make it all the more worse than just staying up in the wee hours to watch it on telly.

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