By David M.
With everyone talking about the movie “One Night in Istanbul” at the moment, I just wanted to stress how important it is for us, as Liverpool FC fans, to think about what significance actually lies underneath that magnificent night in 2005.
That successful night is so similar to what we are experiencing in the Premier League and Champions League now.
On the 25th of May 2005, Liverpool were lining up to face AC Milan in the biggest showcase of club football. What happened in the first 45 minutes bordered on unbearable.
Liverpool were all over the place defensively, offensively and in the middle. To add to this, Milan were completely the opposite. But what happened next, was – and is – exactly the inspiration for this article.
In the second half, although the score was 3-0, Liverpool did not emerge as a beaten team. They did not defend to prevent the football equivalent of a cricket score. They wanted to win.
We all know what happened that night, and the “never say die” attitude worked an absolute dream. “Don’t give up. It’s not the Liverpool way”.
That night we were a team of fighters, all behind our ever-present leader. What I am saying here, is that our current form is not going to last. We still have that same leader. We have all the makings of a great team. Perhaps we miss the goals of Suarez… but only for now. And most of all, we have a great manager.
Last season, Brendan Rodgers, took us to a place that we did not dare dream of in September 2013. So why am I hearing groans and grunts of “Rodgers Out”? There appears to be rumblings of huge pessimism at the moment, but we have only played a few games, and we are breaking in a virtually new team.
A lot of people gave up at half time in Istanbul, but the team demonstrated that things can turn around, even if it looks unlikely.
With Daniel Sturridge injured and not leading the line, and Mario Balotelli up there on his own, at the moment, we don’t seem to be as lethal in attack. But Mario has never played with any of these lads before, so it is a little unfair to single him out. He is an excellent player, and will perform really well, once he finds his feet (both pink and blue!). Winning is about confidence, and negativity from the best fans in the world is not helping.
So what can we do? We all saw Steven Gerrard leap as high as he could, to bring us a goal back in Istanbul. But do we remember what happened directly after? He turned to all the fans, shouting and encouraging them to get behind the team. When we saw him do this, we chanted, we cheered, screamed and applauded. But most of all, we supported. There was no negativity, because we started to believe.
So, next time the lads come out, with that beautiful bird across their chest, and hearing eleven names being announced over the tannoy, why don’t we applaud every name, sing like we are winning… and you never know what may happen.
Us – as fans – can get our lads going. They are our heroes; they are our players; they are our team.
Nobody said it was going to be easy, but have faith and stay positive. Don’t forget to cheer, support and believe, through good and bad.
Gerrard, Balotelli, Sturridge, Sterling, or any other member of the team: “We are Liverpool and we do not give up”. Let’s see the flags waving and hear the crowd singing in Anfield and every other ground we go to this year. Let’s show the other fans how it’s done.
We have a great manager and great players. Let’s show them we believe in them, always and forever, and make some noise.
Our voices will make the difference. It could be 1-0 at Stoke or 5-0 at Spurs, but things will turn around, often when you least expect it. Let’s cheer in hope, in support and in defiance! YWNA