Sobered up? Stopped being ridiculously dehydrated? Stopped hugging friends? Smiling to random people on the street? Looking at videos of The Reds on Twitter and only stopping to look at The Reds on Instagram?
Same, mates. It’s a good job my job is largely talking about football because I’ve been wholly talking about football. Or more importantly Saturday. Saturday afternoon. Saturday night. A Saturday night that went well into Sunday.
You might have heard I had a day on Saturday. From rapping on stage with John Barnes to DJing at a party with Daniel Sturridge. But I’m not interested in my day, I’m interested in yours. What did you do? Where did you go? Was it boss, yeah?
I’ve loved hearing everyone’s stories since I got back.
“Watched it at Aintree Racecourse on a big screen with 2,000 people it felt like being there”.
“Watched it in town. After the game everyone piled onto the street from all the bars and had a big party. Was great.”
“Watched it in an ice cream parlour in Madrid. The TV cut off for the last 10 minutes. Best night of my life.”
You can’t always be in the ground. On Saturday afternoon, 50,000 people were in Plaza de Salvador Dalí at the Liverpool FC Fan Park. Over half of those people wouldn’t have had tickets for the game.
Not many seemed to care at that point, when they were singing and drinking with friends, old and very new, in the baking heat. They just wanted to be there.
You can’t always be in Madrid. Bars in Liverpool were jam packed across the city centre and beyond. Ticketed screenings sold out in minutes and TVs were ordered in for every corner of every boozer.
From around the country, even the world, people came to watch the game in Liverpool to be there if The Reds clinched number six. To be with people who understood what that meant.
You can’t always be in Liverpool. From New York City to Perth, Australia, Liverpool supporters’ clubs got in touch with us saying they were hosting huge events in their cities.
The Brighton Kop sold out not one venue, but two and had a third overspill venue. There was a weekend Liverpool FC convention in Las Vegas for US supporters, and bloody hell did you see the pyro in Indonesia? They’re mad them.
Not everyone could be at the parade, but blimey it felt like it from the footage.
So many came into town just for that. Shaking off hangovers and jumping on trains. The streets lined so heavily they were no longer visible. The bus somehow snaking through the city centre as the red sea in front parted to let them. It was carrying our heroes, after all. Along with the precious European Cup.
I was with some of you. I was with none of you. I was with all of you. That all felt true at various stages on Saturday. Football is a collective activity.
We all watched Liverpool play in a Champions League Final together, just in different parts of the world.
And we fucking did it.
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Still buzzin about the journey of the season and to finally reach the destination with a victory and a trophy to end it was unlike anything i’ve felt. Watched it from Sydney Australia. Couldn’t sleep all night, so headed to the club at 4am, had my first beer at 4:15am, club was packed with a sea of red, 2000+ people shoulder to shoulder like sardines in a can. Celebrated hugging strangers, a few tears and even more beers. Singing Liverpool songs until we got kicked out of the club at 9am. What a ride this season has been. My first time watching the Reds at Anfield. What a time to be alive. Even though i wasn’t in Madrid or Liverpool, the spirit of the club definitely was felt down in Sydney Australia. Cheers to the Anfield Wrap you lads are a bunch of legends.
Why settle for second when you can come first? They look accomplished now don’t they with the trophy in their hands?
Feels really great as an LFC supporter from anywhere right now.
Thanks John for your contribution to TAW. I enjoy reading your articles and hope you continue to write many more (especially on topics like these) to come.
Have a nice summer.
After much internal debate about letting down my best friend in the world who I had a hotel booked with in Manchester for the spice girls, I went. I left lime street to masses of fans streaming in and songs ringing around the station. Regretted it the very second the train pulled out. I got to Manchester, paid for the hotel, had a few beers and sat stewing and stressing. I built up the courage to tell my mate, and other two best pals who’d now joined us that I was going to get back to Liverpool. I couldn’t bear to be a) in Manchester b) missing the celebration I knew we’d be having. I legged it through Manchester to make a train that got me back 20mins before kick off with a ten minute journey on to my local. I arrived in a flap and a fluster but the happiest girl in the pub. Surrounded by family I watched every minute and we danced the night away. No regrets!
One of the best things I can take from it is that it felt just as sweet as Istanbul, exactly how I’d remembered it to be. I was wondering beforehand that if we did win it might not have compared, that notion proved to be wide of the mark I’m glad to have found.
It’s be interesting to get a roundabout number of Reds actually there. 50,000 in that fan park alone and I know loads who didn’t go near there. For every person I knew with a ticket, I knew 4 or 5 travelling without one. I’d hazard a guess and say 70-80,000 there overall easily.
My friends who went there (Madrid) would probably agree with you. I spoke to my friends in London (Chelsea and Arsenal supporters), they are saying that Spurs fans have been saying the same, that Liverpool fans were there in their tens of thousands and truly outnumbered the Spurs fans by 5 or 6 to 1 if not more.
Was in North Liverpool and then the City Centre, then bed, then up, then town for the home-coming. Then more bars in the City Centre. Kidneys are in hell. Liver went there a long time before them. I have yet to come down.
Can’t wait for next season now.
A fella from the airport said last Monday that 100,000 fans came over direct to Madrid from the UK (in fact, they broke their record for flights in a single day). But when you add everyone who drove, or got the train from other cities, you’re talking thousands more.
Just like to add that I’ve walked across that fan park square every day for the last 10 years and my one regret about the final was not being able to be there, seeing Gibbo, Neil, the Boss night lads and John Barnes. That, though, is where TAW comes into its own, isn’t it? All the endless articles, podcasts and videos, all the social media stuff, have done a great job of making me feel like I was.
Hi. In 2005, I had to watch a replay of the game as the 25th was a Wednesday, Kickoff was 3pm in Toronto and I couldn’t get time off work. This year I got to enjoy the magic. 400 supporters in Santiago, Chile got together well before and well after kick off to sing songs that most supporters here don’t even understand. English isn’t widely spoken, LFC is.
Down here in South America I drink my champions of Europe bubbly, take a champions of Europe piss, and twice a day for at least the next year, I will take my dog for a champions of Europe walk. Cheers to all the lads at TAW for making me feel closer to our club all season long. Football is a togetherness. Thanks to you, I haven’t been alone.
I watched from my apartment in Luanda Angola, best night for many many years
Siiiiii Señor, give the ball to Bobby and he will score.
Pure joy. The most perfect weekend.
I guess lfc has been international since the glory days. Perhaps man city will be huge in 30 years time. I was given lfc from my cousin at 4 or 5 years of age and never looked back. You can’t change can you. Loyalty is quite important to humans and often when we make our minds up thats it. It can be a bit strange supporting a team from outside the city but the small town in Wales I come from there is no local loyalty so as I see it you are given a team to support from an elder as a kid and that’s it. Up the fucking reds.
I love this article, John. I flew to Madrid from California, with so many other reds on the plane, most without tickets, all just wanting to be there. I tried to get a ticket and failed. But I watched it in a Madrid bar with my brother and two of my best friends. And about 100 other new best friends. The bar ran out of beer an hour before kickoff. Then the reds won number 6. It was memorable and worth the trip. We did much the same as every other bunch of reds that got together across the world, and it was the night of our lives. We were all a part of a European Cup win, we are all Champions of Europe!
Watched it in a hospital family room with my four brothers who are Reds. Our mam was really sick and sadly died a few hours later on Sunday morning. It was a mix of emotions those 12/13 hours going from the joy to the sadness at our mam passing away.
For those few hours, Liverpool FC, as they always do provide an escape.
Nice one, John.
Spent 24hours in Madrid courtesy of Thomas Cooke Reds from JLA. Had a great time. Madrid airport chaos, taxi queue to Halewood on the way back. Inspired by Juergen to add a few verses of history to his song. The Gutterman may remember a few. Love the Wrap.
Let’s talk about History..
Let’s talk about one, baby
When Joey ate frogs legs for tea
Let’s talk about Keegan, Smith
Terry Mac and Bob Paisley.
Let’s talk about one.
Let’s talk about two, baby
We’re down in Wemberlee
Let’s talk about Hansen, Thommo
And Souey’s ball to King Kenny.
Let’s talk about two.
Let’s talk about three, baby
Now we’re in Gay Paree
Let’s talk about Howard Gayle
Barney Rubble and Sammy Lee.
Let’s talk about three.
Let’s talk about eighty four, baby
Let’s talk about Italy
Let’s talk about The Reds in Rome (again), Grobby’s legs and penalties.
Let’s talk about four.
Let’s talk about five, baby
Remember our little Louis?
Let’s talk about Alonso, Dudek
Three nil down and Stevie G.
Shh…Let’s talk about five.
Let’s talk about six, baby
Let’s talk about Origi
Let’s talk about Rafa, Fagan
Juergen Klopp and Bob Paisley.
Let’s talk about six.
Up the Reds.