That song, that bloody song

This week Liverpool took out defending champs Barcelona in European Champions League soccer. People often ask me (well, they sometimes ask me) whether I regret supporting Liverpool’s arch-rivals Everton instead of the hugely successful club across the park, and whether I’m jealous of Liverpool’s success.
The answer is, I have no regrets. In fact, when I chose to support Everton (or they “picked” me), Liverpool was the best team in the world, something they have not been since their fans rioted in Belgium in 1985 and they were suspended along with all other English clubs from European football. I picked Everton in part because they were the arch-rivals of the best team in the world and had a better history. I’ve never regretted that choice, not even when Everton was minutes away from being bounced out of England’s top league.
I’m not jealous either, except about one thing — a song. Readers of a certain age probably remember the song “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” It was written by Rodgers and Hammerstein for the musical “Carousel.” In the mid-1960s, it became a pop hit for a certain Liverpool group — not the Beatles but Gerry and the Pacemakers. Soon thereafter, it became the anthem for the Liverpool team.
At the end of the Liverpool-Barcelona match on Tuesday, the Anfield faithful, as is customary, sang “You’ll Never Walk Alone” twice, once on their own and once, after the final whistle accompanied by a recording. I had rooted for Barca the whole way, but I couldn’t help feeling a slight chill during both renditions.
I don’t begrudge Liverpool all of their trophies, but why couldn’t we have that song?


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