WHO THE HELL ARE MAN UNITED?
Liverpool FC have a long and successful history in football. Since 1892, Liverpool have in fact claimed the title of “most successful football club in British history, EVER”. Before you start saying “Manchester United have won the league more times than Liverpool” let me run through why that’s not the only thing that counts towards the title we earned.
It’s true that by now Manchester United have won more than the 18 League Title wins Liverpool have come to win in their entire history. However, when we count up ALL the trophies ever won by English clubs, Liverpool do come out on top when the Grand Total of Trophies is announced. So you’re wondering if we’ve won more than Manchester United, exactly how much we have won then? Well, take a look at this: (note the ones that say “British Record”, this means no other club has achieved to win the competition as much as Liverpool).
This is not just a list of everything Liverpool has managed to win since 1892, it’s also “HISTORY”. I have a lot of respect for the history of Liverpool football club – we have worked hard to win everything, without cheating. Liverpool FC is not just about the current squad. We’re more than one man and we are even more than the team of 2014. We should respect and remember fondly and with pride the history of the club since 1892. It’s all important.
Anyone who refuses to accept the importance of Liverpool’s past is denying the very history that made us the greatest club in the country. From Shankly to Paisley, Souness and Evans, Dalglish and Benitez, Keegan, Barnes, Fowler, Rush, Toshack, Hansen, Thompson , Clemence and many more… these were all Liverpool legends that formed the successful history of Liverpool FC. We must remember them. We must remember HISTORY.
It has to be said that a lot of things Manchester United won, they did so with some unfair advantages and even down right CHEATING. “Fair play” is the Liverpool way, but it has not been the Manchester (United) way. That’s one reason why many fans (not just Liverpool fans, but many other fans of the English leagues and more fans around the world whose clubs played against and lost unfairly) cannot respect Manchester United’s history – they didn’t earn it with hard work and sweat. They had players diving in the box in attempts to win penalties they didn’t deserve to get (but the ref gave them and probably sent off a player of the opposing team), kicking pieces out of the opposition as they fouled them badly (without getting red cards) and referee’s giving them all the advantages possible – free kicks, corners, throw ins, penalties, large amounts of extra time – all of which they shouldn’t have had but used to win their matches.
These are all reasons why Man United get no love or respect from many other fans around the world. Anyone who has been watching football for a long time knows United never play (or get their results) fairly and it’s the way they’ve done things for years.
It had not always been that Manchester United had more league titles than Liverpool. For a long period of time our haul of 18 league titles was the all time British record, but then – along came Alex Ferguson! It truly was Ferguson and his teams who became one of the most dominating forces in English football history. In his career as the manager of Manchester United, Ferguson won 28 major honours and 38 in total, from November 1986 to May 2013 – a period of 26 years. Since the formation of the Premier League in 1992, Manchester United still hold the record for “most Premier League title wins” at 13 titles. Certainly, it was Ferguson who started creeping up on Liverpool’s 18 league title wins record, winning title after title and gaining one more to add to the total until they did indeed equal and eventually hold more than 18 league titles. “History, in the making” as they say. That’s what Ferguson did for United. He created much of their succesful history.
That’s not to say all Liverpool fans respected the long time Manchester United manager for his achievements. Many Reds fans hated him, both through bitterness for their success he brought to United and also for his words. He has been quoted so many times over the years, but he could usually say something in any interview leading up to or after Manchester United’s latest fixture and fans could find something they disliked very much about it. It could become a reason to want to win – “Ferguson said WHAT? OH, lets beat them for saying that!”.
Ferguson was also known for putting pressure on referees and match officials, which would give Man United an unfair advantage against most teams since the match officials did not want to displease the fearsome manager with a nasty temper. Liverpool fans would eventually come to love to mock Ferguson and their team as often as possible and if they failed to win their most important games, it would be a chance to poke fun at them and feel like they deserved it for all they had done to Liverpool and our fans over the years.
More than just silverware, the history of the two clubs so close (in distance) and yet so far apart (in terms of friendship) was one of a great rivalry, on and off the pitch. They wanted to win everything we won. We wanted to win everything they won. The league titles, the European Cups, UEFA Cups, FA Cups and League Cups. Both teams have been competing in the same competitions for many years. Only one can be the winner and the way it turned out, we were often head to head for the same trophies. It brought about drama and perhaps even bitterness for the losers.
Fans would remember when they lost unfairly (“they wouldn’t have won if the referee hadn’t given them that penalty they didn’t deserve, because he DIVED!” etc) and the next time the two teams met, the players and manager and fans would be out for revenge and victory which would “justify” the fact that they were the better side and that they had been “robbed” in the last game.
On and on this kind of thing goes, for years – across multiple competitions. It doesn’t matter if we’re going to meet in the league or a cup, it would always be very entertaining to watch and fierce rivalry would usually dictate the fans’ actions. Often songs were sung and chants were chanted about each other. Some of them were just about glory against our rivals which would be sweet music to our own ears, others not so sweet to hear, but the rivalry has led to the singing of songs about even tragic things. It’s known that the two clubs have shared something in common over their long history – TRAGEDY!
On 6th February of 1958, 23 of the 44 people on board a flight carrying pretty much the entire Manchester united squad who had been nicknamed “The Busby Babes” (and also some journalists) crash-landed on a runway in west Germany, due to extreme weather conditions, including snow. Now referred to usually as “the Munich Air Disaster”, the lives lost affected the club’s success in the competitions they had been playing in and would continue to do so until they could rebuild their squad from scratch, though the families of those taken would certainly think not of how the football club they played for would do after such an event, just that they had lost their loved ones.
Then there was the Heysel disaster in 1985 occurring at the European Cup Final between Liverpool and Juventus, which saw ALL English clubs banned from the competition for 5 years (and Liverpool FC banned for 6 years) after violence in the stand of Juventus’ stadium led to 39 football fans deaths as a result of rioting and being crushed (fans were pushed up against walls inside of the stadium and couldn’t breathe). It has since been described as “the darkest hour in the history of the UEFA competitions”.
About 4 years after that, there was the Hillsborough disaster in 1989 which claimed 96 lives as too many people attempted to enter the stadium to watch a FA Cup Semi Final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest and the full stands which had metal gates surrounding the pitch crushed almost 100 people to death as more football fans died yet again. Shortly after this, all football stadiums were required to have a “seating only” policy on their grounds for safety purposes as new regulations about the capacity of football stadiums and how many fans could safely fit into them without risking lives of the fans inside of them were created.
I would like to say that I personally do not approve of songs about these tragic events, not many would. However, they have been the subject of football fans songs and chants, which has led to unrest and disrespect between the two clubs. It’s near impossible to respect a fan who sings about the dead because they hate their rivals so much. This kind of disgusting thing can only lead to more fierce rivalry. Eventually, it can become a reason to want to win against them. No longer just about who will claim victory and perhaps a better position in the competition, they were playing in but also about how fans had treated each other over the years. “You disrespected us, so we’re going to win this game to spite you”.
Many football fans are taught all about each other’s history from a very young age. We are taught everything – not just about who has won which trophies or games. Also, what the fans and the managers and players have been doing to each other (tormenting each other and driving each other crazy at every given opportunity for years, essentially) and that there is very good reason to hate each other, with the basis of justification for it just being “football” and everything connected to it over the two club’s very long history. Liverpool fans grow up with an understanding that “we hate Mancs” and Manchester United fans grow up with an understanding that “we hate Kopites”. I’m not inciting or encouraging hatred between groups of people, it’s been this way for a very long time (even before I was born). That’s just the way it is!
Football does this to people and it likely will never stop. The two teams will keep competing with each other in the same competitions and will continue to be rivals of one another for many years to come yet. It certainly does make for entertaining football, you never know what might happen between these two clubs. It’s all to play for and will be interesting, without a doubt.
For now, Liverpool will do their best to win against Manchester United once more and it will be very entertaining for us all as we watch it everything go down on “Super Sunday”. This match kicks off in the early afternoon in England.
SO GET READY REDS! Our Anfield Family will be there once more with you as we walk on with hope in our hearts. You’ll Never Walk Alone, Reds!
[written by] Stuart Drewery.
I’m an Englishman (born and raised in Liverpool in the 80s). My whole family including my parents and grandparents were Liverpool fans so i was born into being a red.
I’ve seen Liverpool win the league (about 25 years ago) and I’ve been 100% loyal and committed while supporting the Reds through all the good times AND the bad times since the 80s.
I’m a die hard Liverpool fan (only supported ONE club in my whole life, Liverpool) and one of the most dedicated fans you’ll ever meet.