By Mikey Foley (TTT Subscriber ConradHart).
My name is Mikey, and I’m a Liverpool supporter. It has been three days since I last watched a game. I get up at four or five in the morning to watch matches because I now live in Australia. There have been times I have woken up the entire family with my screaming at the TV. I force my son to wear Liverpool pyjamas and sleep beneath a Liverpool bedspread every time Liverpool play. I blamed my wife for a defeat once because she put the duvet on his bed the wrong way around. I have a kid’s football shirt in a frame on the wall because I believe it made Liverpool unbeatable whenever my baby son wore it. I even got my wife to wake him up and put it on when we were 2-0 down to Portsmouth. He got back to sleep eventually. We won.
I have been watching Liverpool since the late 70s. During that time I’ve been sent delirious by Grobbelaar’s wobbly legs and bawled my eyes out to the tune of “it’s all up for grabs now.” I took trophy after trophy for granted and had to listen to people telling me how easy it is to support Liverpool. Then I learned what it’s like to be on the outside looking in as the Mancs overtook our League Championship haul.
The scariest time during my Liverpool supporting life was when two morons bought the club and made me feel so utterly helpless as stupid decision after scary decision was being made. I cannot even imagine how fellow supporters at Portsmouth and Wimbledon must feel after our brief dalliance with truly frightening owners.
Throughout the dry times and the scary times we were still an exciting club to be a part of. Cup finals, Robbie Fowler, Newcastle epics. Then Hodgson came along and made me question the value in getting up at some ungodly hour to watch a turgid excuse for football on the TV. Why should I suffer through another exhausting day at work, struggling to stay awake, for this? The signings, the tactics, the press conferences. They all contributed to one of the darkest times for me as a Liverpool supporter. It wasn’t that we weren’t winning. It was that for the first time in my life I didn’t enjoy seeing Liverpool simply play football.
All of a sudden I was feeling guilty for taking top 4 finish after top 4 finish for granted. I wanted to see Juventus and Real Madrid visit Anfield again. I longed for Wednesday night football that wasn’t Coca Cola flavoured. I wanted big name European players to be linked with us. I wanted Anfield to be just as appealing to young English talents as The Emirates. I missed feeling sick throughout the day at work and not being able to think of anything but that night’s Champions League final.
As sugar daddy owners transformed the game I became a realist and tried to make the most of what we currently had. First and foremost it was about enjoying every game. Seeing the chinks of light and the hopes for the future. I started this season in that manner. I wasn’t sure about Brendan Rodgers or Luis Suarez or Martin Skrtel or Steven Gerrard’s age or Raheem Sterling’s application or Jordan Henderson’s future. I wasn’t sure what we were capable of but I was determined to enjoy every single game and try to get a handle on where we were going under Brendan Rodgers. Fourth place was the ultimate dream.
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