The Importance of Winning the Derby

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Twitter is the breeding ground for bad ideas and I’ve seen plenty on there lately. From the petition to sign Marco Reus, the “let’s all dress as Jurgen Klopp” for the Villa game movement that made the press to the recent “I hope we lose so Brendan Rodgers is sacked” gang that’s starting to get some traction.

I’ve seen tweets along the lines of “yeah a loss to Everton definitely means the end for Rodgers.” Obviously I’ve improved the grammar and spelling of the tweet but you get the idea. There are Liverpool fans that want Liverpool to lose games. The same fans that spout ‘I support Liverpool, not the manager’, see the irony in all of that?

How could a Liverpool loss ever be for the greater good? I may come across as selfish when I say I want Liverpool to win the derby, but I do. After the United game it’s one of the biggest games of the season for me and losing it isn’t an option.

Importance of Winning Derby

“Yeah but what if a loss to Everton guaranteed Rodgers being sacked?”

The whole idea that a loss to Everton would be the final nail in Brendan Rodgers’ career seems a little presumptive to me. Would FSG really sack the manager on the back of a defeat to Everton? We could lose due to a scrappy 90th minute goal having played some scintillating stuff. We could play the worst 90 minutes of Rodgers’ tenure as Liverpool manager, win the game and yet he’s sacked regardless. There will be a tipping point for FSG, they may have already decided his fate but in the derby form is irrelevant and that’s why it shouldn’t be judged too much. He’s managed to survive defeats to United, Arsenal, Stoke, Palace, West Ham and draws to Norwich and Carlisle, a loss without context to Everton won’t, and nor should it, decide his fate.

The derby to me isn’t just a normal game. It divides a city. It divides families and it’s a unique rivalry, almost a sibling rivalry. A little brother (Everton) trying to outdo the big brother (Liverpool).

If Everton manage to win the derby their fans don’t forget it. It’s not normal to them like it is for us. Shirts, commemorative cups and DVDs are made of the event. Their small time mentality flares up like a bad rash. It’s a never-ending gloat. We as Liverpool fans have to put up with it until the next derby and it can never come soon enough. In school, in work and at family events. When the blue half of Merseyside are victorious it’s always a personal hell.

The whole locals vs foreigners debate has been done to death and I hate the narrative that foreigners ruin the atmosphere, that’s just not the case. I do think though it’s only locals that truly feel the impact of a loss to Everton. Having to hear “Merseyside is Blue” sung at Anfield is one of the worst feelings as a Liverpool fan. Like when your younger sibling beats you at something every now and again. It hurts more when you aren’t considered the best anymore despite having more awards and records than them. Even losing just the once is enough. Media always hype the matches against Manchester United but losing to Everton is not an option.

I work with my Uncle and Cousins and they’re all Blues. They’re the only ones in my family that aren’t Liverpool fans and whenever they win a derby they don’t half go on about it. My Girlfriend’s Dad and Uncle are Blues. The fear I have that any future children of mine will be a Blue is real. Sometimes it skips a generation and Everton look appealing (I still haven’t understood why my cousins decided to support the blue side of Liverpool). Liverpool victories repel that, and of course the fact my girlfriend is a Red, so it’s always advantage Liverpool at family parties, for now.

This game is never just about three points so writing it off is small time and we aren’t Everton. We don’t take a small loss on the off chance it improves the future. Remember how Everton fans cheered the Man City goals as their own Champions’ League dreams disappeared but it didn’t matter as it meant Liverpool weren’t winning the league? I remember *speaking (*swearing) to my Uncle the following day and his thought process was “we can qualify for the Champions League next season, Liverpool won’t get this chance again”. That went well for them didn’t it… In hindsight he says he feels like a d*ckhead for cheering those City goals that day. Do you want to look back in a season or two and regret watching a Liverpool game and actively not wanting them to win? You can delete tweets but it won’t clear your conscience as you shift uncomfortably in your seat at a pub as your friend takes the piss out of somebody else who wants Liverpool to lose under whoever the current manager is at that time.

How can you honestly want an Everton win? A Liverpool loss. Imagine their glee knowing Rodgers’ last game, the man who got us so close to the title, was a loss to them. That’s a big achievement for them, I’d expect a few t-shirts to be made and it’s not something I’d live down for a while. I don’t want that. I want to see the Blues being blue come Sunday afternoon. Identical to how they looked when Andy Carroll nodded home the winner at Wembley.

I may be being narrow minded here but if you want Liverpool to lose and be in a terrible run of form going into what’s probably the most important month of the season with big games every single week just on the off chance Rodgers is sacked?

Why not do as you preach and put the club before any player or manager? You may not like Rodgers, you don’t have to. All you have to do is want Liverpool not to lose to Everton this Sunday. It doesn’t make you any less of a fan to cheer on a side that currently employs a manager you dislike.

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  1. “How could a Liverpool loss ever be for the greater good?”
    If it help to free us from the cancer that is Brendan Rodgers, it’s good.
    Of course, when the game start, i curse if we concede, i cheer if we score, feel happy if we win and sad if we lose, It’s impossible to contain these feelings, but this doesn’t change one thing: If losing games will help Liverpool to get rid of Rodgers, than i hope we lose (it’s contradictory, but Football never is really a logical thing), sometimes we need to endure these things until everything get better again.

  2. tbf I’ve seen many Liverpool fans embracing the small club mentality, where the failure of another club is treated as more important than our own success (or even greater failures)

    • We would never want to lose a match that would get us into the CL though, just to stop United/ Chelsea, even Everton, winning the league.Everton’s fans were a disgrace that day, and so were their players. All that matters to me is Liverpool’s result. I didn’t even want us to do badly when Hodgson was in charge.


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