A picturesque Anfield, basking in the Mersyside suns’ radiance, oh, how it all seemed so befitting for a man who had kept the failing recent light on Mersyside, shining as bright as one man possibly could will it to. As the hallowed Saturday approached, it hadn’t sunk in yet, our leader, our role model, our captain was to leave home. The crowd, loud as ever, the mosaics as beautiful as we’ve ever seen grace the stands of Anfield, fitting for player as holistically brilliant as we’ve ever seen grace the pitch of Anfield.
However, even on a day as special as this, Gerrard was not to be spared from the storyline that had haunted his whole career. Whilst he could not ask for more from mother nature, nor his fellow Liverpool faithful, and I use the word fellow as literal as possible, for I believe he is as faithful as the faithful do come. It was the usual suspects that have let him down his whole career, the club he loves never quite able to produce a team capable of complementing his fine ilk, nor the backroom able to figure themselves out enough to give him a proper foundation. Yet, in spite of this, he has grown into such a formidable name, seen by the tributes pouring in from all sources. He deserved better, and sadly enough, his career was to foreshadow his last game at Anfield, drawing a parallel we’ve seen much too often.
An extremely poor performance by an increasingly alarmingly regressing set of players. This seems to have been the problem throughout the season, this and a manger that seems to be out-manoeuvred and out-foxed by some of the poorest managers the league has ever seen. On the day of Gerrard’s last performance, the fan base was perplexed and asking more questions than FSG seem to have the answers for at this point in time. The day was, however, furthermore marred by the increasingly stupid notion of Plane Banners = Results. This, was none of the clubs doing, but rather the growing dark side of the Liverpool fan base rearing its ugly head again, for the world to see, on the last day it should have been done. The bringing up of even the slightest contentious issue should have been reserved for another day, for a man to have given 17 years of his life, making the people happy, being his unequivocal goal, to have this, his last and most emotional day at Anfield, tainted by an issue that he has no business being part of is a damning indictment on the current state of the Liverpool fanbase, the fact that an aeroplane was even used in the first place was sad enough.
Liverpool as a club, failed Steven Gerrard on Saturday, the culmination of poor management, poor signings and an ultimately unmotivated team is something that should be worrying the Liverpool faithful, somewhat more than the emotional torment of an idol leaving indefinitely. The shades of Ibe and Coutinho linking up magnificently, gave the one hope for the future of Liverpool Football Club, as a hub for the finest young talent, however, the calamitous defending, epitomised by the image of Lovren being outmuscled whilst Rodgers, symbolising the whole fan base, covered his face to mask his extreme disbelief, reminded on of the possible mid table reality of Liverpool, with a couple more overpriced signings and the continual poor management of the already decent squad of players.
Thus, on a day such as this, when all the reality seemed to cave in, and the once rigid belief of being a top class club that we’ve ensconced ourselves in for far too long seemed to all fade away. In this there is an ironic beauty, that just as Stevie had been the light that lit up Liverpool as a footballing force is leaving, that Liverpool are faced with their biggest summer to try and desperately keep that rapidly fading light shining.