Sunday, May 9

Liverpool fans unite against the Super League

Liverpool drew Leeds United in a soccer game tonight.

And that, actually, is almost all that I am willing to write on the subject.

Sure, I could talk about Sadio Mane and Diego Llorente, Jurgen Klopp and Marcelo Bielsa. I could go on with the pressure and energy, give my opinion on midfield battles, attacking genius, and defensive insecurities.

I could even mention what this result means in terms of the Premier League table. Liverpool lose the opportunity to go fourth while Leeds remains tenth; all yet to play, with six games remaining.

But who cares about all that right now?

No seriously, who cares?

This was an accessory rendered meaningless by the events of the previous 36 hours, a game played in a context of rebellion and revolt. Soccer, soccer as we know it, is in crisis, and until that is resolved, you will have to forgive us for ignoring the battle of the top four, the struggles of Naby Keita or the curious disappearance of Ben Davies.

How did this come about? How can some billionaires and executives threaten to invest the entire balance of the most popular sport in the world?

How can Liverpool players and staff, none of whom have had a say in the club’s decision to commit to a new separatist Super League, be greeted with chants of “scum” and “greedy b * stards”, as they did? upon arrival at Elland Road here?

Meanwhile, those who promoted this movement remain silent. While the fire burns, Fenway Sports Group has not offered comment. They didn’t even appear in the story that appeared on their club’s official website late Sunday night, announcing plans that could, if met, completely change the face of national and European football as we know it.

Instead, the incomplete and insufficient press release cited Joel Glazer, Manchester United co-president, as well as Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez.

A Kop out, if there ever was one.

Make no mistake, Liverpool fans are angry about this. It may only have been a crowd of a hundred who greeted Klopp and his team here, but the sentiments expressed are shared throughout the game.

This week, the Spion Kop 1906 fan group will remove their iconic Kop flags and banners ahead of the weekend’s game with Newcastle. “We feel that we can no longer support a club that puts financial greed above the integrity of the game,” they posted.

Spirit of Shankly, Liverpool’s supporters union, called for the Super League plans, which were leaked to The times on Sunday afternoon, they were “embarrassed” and said they were “horrified” by the news of their club’s involvement.

“FSG has ignored the fans in their tireless and greedy pursuit of money,” they added.

“Soccer is ours, not theirs. Our football club is ours, not theirs ”.

That is huge. These are some of football’s most passionate and loyal fans, people who dedicate their lives and salaries to their club, who follow Liverpool around the world, and are embarrassed, driven to despair by what they are witnessing. .

As always, it is the fans who suffer first and consider themselves last. They have been forced to stay home for the better part of a year, made to endure the horrors of VAR and now this.

The beautiful game, huh?

You felt Klopp, compelled to answer questions that should be answered by those above him here. The Reds boss has already declared his position on a Super League proposal; is against, and I play fair with him, he hadn’t altered his posture when asked before the game. He wasn’t exactly harsh on his bosses, but he made his feelings clear enough.

“I like the competitive aspect of football,” Klopp said. “I like that West Ham can play in the Champions League. I don’t want them to do it because we want to, but I like that they have the opportunity.”

He confirmed that neither he nor his players had been consulted before the news was revealed, while objective understands that club staff were only informed of the proposals in an email from Billy Hogan, the executive director, on Monday morning.

“We know this announcement has sparked strong feelings within the game and elsewhere,” wrote Hogan, who replaced Peter Moore at the job last September. “But we believe that this decision is in the long-term best interests of Liverpool Football Club.”

There are some within the game, and even some within Liverpool, who still believe that it is a power game, an extreme case of risky politics, designed to intimidate UEFA into allowing clubs greater power and control within. the original structure of the Champions League. Many think that a compromise will eventually be found.

However, at the moment it seems a long way off, with UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin talking about ‘snakes’ and how those involved have ‘spit in the faces of all football lovers’. Ceferin has declared that all the players of the clubs that participate in the Superliga will be prohibited from playing in their respective countries, while Jesper Moller, of the UEFA executive committee, has suggested that Chelsea, Manchester City and Real Madrid may be expelled from the Champions League this season, whose semifinals will be held at the end of this month.

Not make mistakes; football is at war and Liverpool is in the middle of it. They tied here, but have lost overall. The damage they and their 11 cohorts have done this week will require some repairs.

Football without fans is nothing, and Liverpool will never forgive their club for this.

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