I woke up at 7.50am on Saturday. Annoying that, isn’t it? You moan about getting up early all week for work and then you wake up on a Saturday at the same time anyway.
Now I know what you might be thinking.
“7.50am isn’t early, I’m up at 6am every day, blah, blah, blah.”
Well I didn’t get into whatever business The Anfield Wrap is to get up early, OK? So, after half an hour of realising early mornings are cold and rubbish, I went back to bed.
Predictably, I am then rushing round to get ready in time. We’re meeting at 12pm in town to record the last section of Awaydays for The Friday Show. Walshy is early so has gone to a surprisingly busy O’Neills, Ben is coming from Kirkby but not far behind, while Mick is late because he is arguing with the lovely people at Liverpool’s ticket office. I’m somewhere in the middle.
We start close to 12:15pm. Not bad really. It’s the day after AFQ so there is plenty of booze knocking about to start us off for a long day. Beers are drunk. Wines are opened. It’s all very unnecessary. But you can’t be expected to talk about the joys of West Brom away sober, can you? I hope you subscribers have enjoyed the series. We’ve had fun doing it.
Just after one we swap over with the What We Call History team. They are recording the last part of a mammoth 2007-8 series. I bet you didn’t think so much content would be recorded on a Saturday lunch time, did you? High fives and hugs are exchanged and microphones are swapped for pint glasses. We leave them to it.
It’s both Ben and Ronan’s birthday, which is quite the recipe for fun, debauchery and a near death experience. We start in McCooleys in Concert Square but it’s a bit busy so we try upstairs. They have decked it out as a games room and it’s boss.
The highlight is shuffleboard. A game I’ve played in New York without really knowing the rules. Luckily, there are some Norwegians on hand to teach us and we are soon all pretending to be experts. There are chest bumps, tactical discussion and agony as I turn about three winning situations into losing ones by skillfully knocking my own weights off the table.
After wins and losses, highs and lows and several pints of San Miguel me and Kev grab Neil and Ally from Newington and head to the ground. We are going up early with the idea of doing more video around the game. Now I’m not sure if other media organisations drink several pints of lager before trying new ventures, but there we go. That’s how we like to dive into things. Drunk.
Liverpool are mustard, aren’t they? Sadio Mane being lightening really helps. At one point in the first half I think we’re just going to keep scoring until half-time. We don’t quite, but two is fine. The atmosphere is great. Wave after wave of Liverpool attack followed by wave after wave of Liverpool noise. Just as it should be.
We do a video at half-time, too. I was pretty smashed by then but I don’t think anyone noticed…
Second half the Reds are controlled and professional. Spurs never really look like getting back in it. We see it out with relative ease. We even got to take Mane off for a lovely clap.
Post-match show then town. How it should be. Everyone is in Newington. Everyone is smiling. Everyone forgets how to behave. My god we win one league game in 2017 and this happens. Maybe it’s for the best we aren’t top. At some point it just ends up being us and Steph Heneghan is DJing and everything is right with the world. The very, very blurry world.
I get in just before three, I believe. Suggestions the next day are not everyone was so lucky. There are timed pictures from Magnet close to five with people looking very ropey, while rumours are Social Media Shaun went to Heaven till seven. Well it was his birthday too.
Up The Shuffleboard Reds.