When Jamie Carragher was quizzed in early 2005 about Steven Gerrard potentially leaving Liverpool FC for a ‘superior’ club, his response was swift and immediate:
“I’m not having that, who’s bigger than Liverpool?”
This was before the magic of Istanbul and after Liverpool had already lost over 10 Premier League matches that season and were over 20 points below the leaders, Chelsea.
Fast forward 12 years and year after year I hear the same thing from fans and pundits: “Coutinho is going to go to a bigger club like Barcelona” and it makes me sick.
Klopp addressed this issue very quickly when he arrived, declaring that he will transform Liverpool into a club which no one wants to leave. In my opinion, he’s doing a mighty fine job of it so far, but why aren’t the fans changing, yet?
These days, putting pen to paper and publicly declaring your long-term loyalty to a club will still be met with murmurings of a hidden agenda:
“LFC are just protecting his price for when they sell him in the summer”
“If we don’t win the league next year, he’s definitely off”
“If Barcelona or Real come knocking, he’ll force his way out”
The common response to this is saying that you’re “Just accepting reality”, but by calling this version of our club reality, are you not just accepting a level of mediocrity (something that these very same pessimistic people will accuse positive people of).
In my eyes, our most recent trophy hauls, or the size of our global fan base or the amount of social media followers our club has does NOT define how big my club is. Without getting too spiritual into my passion for Liverpool, this club will forever be the biggest club in the world even if we didn’t win anything for another 20-30 years.
Going back to what Carragher said, “Who’s bigger than Liverpool?”, what he’s implying is right, no one is bigger than Liverpool to those that love this club the most.
Until our fans rally behind this and get that pure love for our club, through all its faults, lows, bad corners, penalty misses and heart-wrenching moments, we will never be the biggest club in the world both on the field and in our hearts.
Klopp said that he wants to build a culture and atmosphere within Liverpool where no one wants to leave and I believe he’s doing that with his intense passion. Our players will be excited to come to training every day, they’ll be excited to play for our club because of the passion.
The players will see our adoring fans from Anfield, Liverpool to ANZ Stadium, Sydney to Fenway Park, Boston and they will understand, there’s no bigger club in the world than Liverpool.