I CAN’T stop thinking about Thursday night. Specifically, I can’t stop thinking about one bit in particular. The game poised at 3-3, Liverpool have heroically fought back to be one crucial moment, one strike, one goal from another historic night. The Reds win a free kick, panic and anticipation spreads throughout the ground.
“Just give us one more chance – Just one more”
The ball hangs up to the far post and time seems to stand still. Our eyes dart across ahead of the ball from the second to back row of the Kop to see who has the opportunity to be a hero. They settle on Degsy ‘The Lov’ Lovren and all hopes turn to prayers.
“Go on Degsy lad, come on Degsy”
Degsy is there, in the moment, thinking the same thing.
“Get the ball to me, let me get on the end of this, I’ll be the hero here”.
It was almost like it was written in the stars. The ball from Milner comes right to the far post, Degsy has pulled away into space, he has time, he has space, and he steadies himself to write his name into the history books.
“This is it” thinks Degsy.
With that, he drops deep, lets the ball come across his shoulder, pulls his left foot back and lets rip like a Tiger Woods drive if he was back off the rails and brassed up to the max. In his head he is Marco Van Basten and there is only one place the ball is going.
In reality, it ends up over by the main somewhere. People around us go berserk. Me and Adam Melia start laughing, somewhat manically and remind ourselves of Degsy’s inner belief. This is a man who backs himself. This is a man who in his head is destined for greatness.
I can’t stop thinking about that volley because I can’t stop watching his winning goal and his ensuing celebration. The BT Sport tweet of his last goal is etched on my brain.
I have studied it, analysed it, researched it, slowed it down, broke it into its component parts, put it back together and sped it up again, re-watched it with sound, watched it in the shops, watched it in the house, watched it instead of eating breakfast. If it was a tape it would be worn out. If it was a painting it would need to go into a room with no sunlight and be painstakingly refurbished. There are so many sub plots, so many different things to focus on I’m fairly sure that if someone streams it onto the back of a cows arse in the Tate in the next few months it would piss the Turner prize and probably sort out the issues in the Middle East whilst it was on its break.
Degsy “The Lov” Lovren’s celebration has got me. I didn’t score too many goals in my not so illustrious amateur football career but I scored a couple of important ones and the first thing to note is that I screamed, something along the lines of “Fuckin get innnn” as I ran off and slid, or lashed my top over my head or whatever, every single time. Now the Lov scores what is possibly one of the most important and historic goals in Liverpool’s recent history and he doesn’t open his mouth. Well he does, but only to take the time out to spit as he runs towards the Kop.
Imagine this is Family Fortunes and we asked a hundred people what they would do if they scored the winner, Kop end, in one of the greatest games in our history and I’m fairly sure you are getting a big fat “our survey says” uh-uhhhhhh for running off without opening your mouth except to do a bit of a spit.
That celebration is not the response of someone who doesn’t normally score. The attempted Van Basten isn’t the response of a rationale person. Almost like he knew he would score at some point, deserved to, was obviously going to, the celebration was more of a “of course I have” than a “fuckin get inn, are you having that” and frankly what is not to love about that?
Alright his self-belief levels can lead to the occasional larruping of the ball over the bar from 50 yards (see Aston Villa semi final) and the creation of a clothing label called Russell Brown, which appears to focus on creating jumpers and hoodies with a massive big Owl as the logo but that is no harm is it? Degsy explains the significance of the Owl as Follows:
“He’s strong; it represents power and signifies perfectionism.”
I think it is fair to suggest that the owl is based on Degsy and Degsy is slightly crackers but again I think I quite like that.
Either way I thought he was magnificent. For the last thirty minutes he is one of the main driving forces of the pressure we put them under. His defending on the front foot was excellent, the number of times he broke down an attack and turned the ball over was crucial to the outcome. He is brilliant for Sakho’s goal where he isn’t interested in the ball, he turns away and blocks off Sakho’s marker giving him the space to attack the ball and score. Well in the Lov, well in the owl, well in Sakho, well in everyone.
As a reward shall we all play a lovely game of substituting the word Love for “The Lov” in popular song titles? Have a go, it is great. Here is my top ten:
10) All you need is The Lov – The Beatles
9) It must have been The Lov – Roxette
8) You give The Lov a bad name – Bon Jovi
7) We found The Lov – Rihanna feat. Calvin Harris
6) What’s The Lov got to do with it – Tina Turner
5) I want to know what The Lov is – Foreigner
4) Addicted to The Lov – Robert Palmer
3) How deep is The Lov – The Bee Jees
2) The Lov Train – O’Jays
1) I’d do anything for The Lov (but I won’t do that) – Meat Loaf
I like to think of Kloppo, sitting in his office, reviewing the progress of the players singing “we found The Lov in a hopeless place” as he reviews his paperwork, wandering why he always wears owl related clobber to training. I also can’t stop thinking about what The Lov train would actually entail and I can’t get the Hogwarts Express out of my head.
Meat Loaf is number one because after Thursday I probably would do anything for The Lov with the exception of wearing any of his clobber for fear of looking like a mentalist.
I love the way Kloppo gave Degsy the day off on Sunday as the Reds cruised to victory. I like to think he spent the day substituting himself into Love related song titles and watching his winner over and over again. I’ve just watched it again.
Good lord it is good and there is so much going on. Dan Sturridge’s little Hendo skip, The Lov’s spit and then little snidey, off hand, almost dismissive kick of the microphone, Emre Can ending up in the crowd with only one leg, the lad celebrating with Kloppo whilst Kloppo is literally keeping him at arm’s length; Turner prize lads.
Your focus always returns to the central character in the piece. What is that floating at the back post? It looks like an owl rising in human form.
The Lov is in the air,
der der der der der der,
The Lov is in the air,
Der der der der der der der
The Lov is in the air.