Back in August as the football season was about to kick off I was experiencing a major enthusiasm failure. Fearing another year of the same old story I was all set to watch less football than ever and anticipated only a cursory interest in proceedings. It wasn’t simply that my team, Liverpool
, had been so average for so long, it was the predictability of just about everything. Two teams would vie for the title, probably both from Manchester, the newly promoted sides would be cut off at the bottom, Chelsea and Arsenal would make it into the Champions League and another season would go out with a whimper.
The Sign of Things to Come
My first hint of the drama to come was Liverpool’s early victory over Manchester United. Even in the bad days we would beat them occasionally but this time it was the manner of the victory that hinted at a change of the established order. Manchester United looked average and Liverpool were winning even before the return of Luis Suarez. Even Manchester City were faltering. I was convinced that the Liverpool renaissance wouldn’t last but when we were top of the league at Christmas I had cause to reassess my feelings.
Fall From Grace
By this time Manchester United had clearly fallen off their perch and the bottom half of the table was as congested as Oxford Street on a bad day. This was no ordinary season and I had started to get rather excited. As each week passed the drama simply increased and when Liverpool thrashed Arsenal at Anfield I started to dream.
Since then every week has been like torture! The glistening prize has drawn ever closer but the knowledge that just one slip up could ruin everything makes watching each match nothing less than horrendous. Everyone thought that it would be Liverpool who cracked under the strain of it all but it has thus far been Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal who have buckled. Manchester United are nowhere to be seen.
There are now three games to go and the winning post is in sight. I am not getting out the party supplies and balloons yet because in this season of twists and turns anything could still happen but Liverpool look like they mean business. I feel convinced that they will slip up in at least one of the three games but I am equally certain that Manchester City and Chelsea will too. I now feel that on the last day of the season Liverpool will indeed be either playing Newcastle as Champions or will beat them to win the title.
The Last Day
I wouldn’t be feeling so confident were we playing another team on the last day but if I could choose anyone to face on such a momentous occasion in would be the Geordies. We always seem to beat Newcastle at Anfield and they are already safe from relegation. They also seem to have somewhat imploded. I am still nervous that something will go wrong but it does look like Liverpool will become the most unlikely champions for years and that has to be good for football as a whole.
Article by Sally Stacey