Liverpool Atmosphere: The Force Awakens
Many years ago, In a galaxy far, far away there was a prophecy spoken about a normal one. The prophecy of the normal one was that foretold the coming of a being who would bring balance to the Liverpool fans.
Jurgen was the normal one. Anfield was at it’s lowest ebb for many years and the force it once was now nothing more than a myth. He was the one to teach both the players and the fans to believe again. The manager we’ve been searching for.
There was a shift in the force during the 2-2 draw with West Brom at Anfield. Instead of doubting the players the fans ended up rallying behind them. The players in turn responded and managed to grab a dramatic equaliser in added time. Afterwards Klopp rounded up the players to thank the fans for this showing of support. Almost like a master praising his apprentice. Positive reinforcement.
However those still entangled with the dark side seemed to take this negatively. Once a bright hope, Brendan Rodgers himself left the Liverpool seat having been seduced by the dark side.
Twitter was full of people saying it’s not ‘the Liverpool way’ to celebrate a draw at home to West Brom. Others called it cringeworthy seeing the players hold hands and share a moment with the fans and there were even some suggesting Klopp did it as a publicity stunt to get back on side with the fans.
For those unfamiliar with Bundesliga football, thanking fans after the match has finished is a weekly occurrence. They even do it after a loss. Clubs and players realise the fact fans have spent their hard earned money and given up two hours of their weekend to come and support them so the least they can do is acknowledge them. It’s only really in England that there is a disconnect between the team and the fans, clubs over here seem to view fans as cash cows as opposed to actual humans with emotions.
What’s even more peculiar when looking at the reaction is the fact Mamadou Sakho, after the Rubin game at Anfield, applauded all four sides of Anfield and the fans loved it. What’s the difference in one player doing it to show ‘passion’ and the entire team doing it to say thanks?
Looking at the bigger picture though, could this be the turning point? On paper a 2-2 draw with West Brom at home looks like two dropped points but could this be the game that awakens the Kop from its slumber? Before Klopp Anfield had a Darth Sideous feel about it. There needs to be an uprising from within. A rebellion. Fans need to want to change what’s become the norm.
Will this unite the fans and the players to make Anfield a fortress once again? The disconnect between players and fans is one of the reasons there’s been this almost toxic atmosphere for the past few years when at Anfield. Fans resent players for not pulling their weight. Players resent fans for giving them a hard time. As things were it wasn’t going to change. There was nothing for them to get behind.
When on the same page Anfield is a force of nature. Will we now start feeling Anfield shaking beneath your feet as you cheer roar the players on. A roar is almost primal and that’s what Anfield should be like. Primal instinct to protect what’s yours which in this case is your home. Anfield. No Jedi mind tricks needed, just Liverpool fans doing what they do best and acting like the 12th man.
I’ve been on the Kop when the atmosphere is electric. I’m not exaggerating when I say the stadium shakes and the players feed off this. Why wouldn’t they? You’re going into battle and you’re backed up by 40,000 people. Then when you can visibly see your support is deflating the opposition it’s as though their life force drains and it just spurs you on to carry on getting at them.
In what’s happened since, it seems as though what the players did has slipped under the radar. Very little has been written about it in the media, fans have overlooked it but the fact Liverpool scored so late on will have given the players a much needed shock to the system. How many times have we saw Liverpool concede a goal late on and the players look bereft of confidence. If Liverpool conceded anytime after the 80th minute to go behind you might as well have just finished the game there because they weren’t getting back into it. Klopp said he needed to turn doubters into believers and that included the players.
Did we finally see the mood change on Sunday? Klopp orchestrating the fans in the lead up to that final note, the atmosphere approaching fever pitch and when Divock Origi scored his goal it was as though a fuse was lit. You could see the emotion pour out. You could see both the player and the fans believing they could win the game. Had that game gone on for another few minutes I’ve no doubt in my mind Liverpool were winning that and this confidence should be carried over into the festive period of games. Liverpool players will no longer fear playing at Anfield.
Will people look back at this match and not associate it with a 2-2 draw with WBA but instead remember it as the game that Klopp finally woke the unstoppable force within Anfield?
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