So for the past six Liverpool games, I’ve pretty much been missing in action. Those of you who follow me on Twitter or read the blog regularly will know that I recently finally moved out of the parents and into a new flat with the fella. Shortly after that we went on a two week trip to Italy that’s been planned for a long time and while we were away the fella proposed. Insane, in the very best way.
While finally being an adult is exciting and keeping me extremely occupied, I am quite sad that I’m finding less and less time to blog. Writing is something I’ve always enjoyed so I try to find time where possible even if it’s just to help me relax.
|Image via Liverpool Echo|
So, something a bit different on the blog today, I wanted to get down some thoughts on our last six matches, four of which I watched in different cities and towns in Italy.
As we draw ever closer to the last match of the season I thought it would be nice to look back on our recent clashes.
Liverpool (2) v Chelsea (0) – Sunday 14th April – Location: Bologna
So we started our Italian trip in the city of Bologna. As a brief overview, for those wondering, I’ve always been obsessed with Italy since I was a little kid, my Mom bought me a fake Totti shirt off the market I think and from that day onwards my interest in Italian football begun. Quickly I realised that Italy was also a beautiful country with stunning food and drink too so it was a win-win for me!
Anyway, back to football. Bologna was a lovely place, even though it rained most of the first day. I managed to find a small Irish bar about a 15-minute walk from the hotel so we headed there early. We walked into a packed pub full of Bologna fans as they were playing Fiorentina away, the home fans had to settle for a 0-0.
After their match had finished the bar staff informed us that the Liverpool v Chelsea game was actually on downstairs. The TV was a lot smaller, there was no sound and I’d forgotten to bring my glasses, but hey, we were on and that’s all that mattered.
The stand out from this match was that absolutely stunning Mo Salah goal, what a strike. After all of the build-up and circus in the media around the significance of Chelsea in our title race, the Gerrard slip etc, I was over the moon when Salah smashed that one in.
Porto (1) v Liverpool (4) – Wednesday 17th April – Location: Rome
After stopping in Florence and getting engaged… as yer do, we then travelled on to Rome which is where I would have to watch our Champions League tie. I found another Irish bar, this time a huge one with massive screens and surround sound.
The Magners flowed and Liverpool followed suit, a smooth game for the Reds who found four goals thanks to Mane, Salah, Firmino and van Dijk. Porto could only manage a consolation goal and the Reds had firmly secured their semi-final place against Barcelona.
I was buzzing in Rome, a karaoke followed with American tourists singing anything from Queen to early Miley Cyrus. A good night all round in the capital haha.
Cardiff (0) v Liverpool (2) – Sunday 21st April – Location: Amalfi, Amalfi Coast
The Cardiff game would prove a bit more of a challenge in terms of finding somewhere to watch it. Amalfi is a relatively small coastal town, an Irish bar wasn’t available so I thought sod it, I’ll log into Sky Go and have to make do with a phone screen.
About 20 minutes in and one of the waiters spotted we were watching something on a phone then asked if it was Liverpool, they’d managed to get the match on the big screen in the hotel.
A rare goal from Gini Wijnaldum was followed later on by a James Milner penalty. I must admit I was getting quite nervy at the start of this game, it had the feel of a banana skin but the Reds as they have done all season remained calm and got the job done.
Liverpool (5) v Huddersfield (0) – Friday 26th April – Location: Taormina, Sicily
This was the last day of our epic holiday around Italy and I was feeling quite sad about having to go home but Liverpool soon fixed that with a solid performance against Huddersfield.
This time I’d found a small sports bar in Taormina, I’d watched the United v City match in the same place a couple of nights before and it was a good atmosphere. Lazio and AC Milan were on two TVs in the Coppa Italia and the English football on the third TV.
Every match at this stage as a Liverpool fan, even if it is against doomed Huddersfield, makes you feel sick. Well it does for me anyway. I was delighted when Keita scored after just a minute as it settled the nerves. A brace from Mane and another brace from Salah followed and Liverpool had secured yet another three points.
Barcelona (3) v Liverpool (0) – Wednesday 1st May – Location: Sports pub on the outskirts of Wolverhampton
I’d been back at work for three days at this stage, already wanted to return to Italy, but the thought of a Champions League tie against the mighty Barcelona got me through that week.
I am quite a rose-tinted fan so I always think we have a chance in almost any game and it was no different for me as the Reds lined up at the Nou Camp.
We played so bloody well, so well. The scoreline does not fairly reflect the performance put in by the lads and we were enormously unlucky not to find an away goal. Salah’s chance at the end was agonising to watch.
Newcastle (2) v Liverpool (3) – Saturday 4th May – Location: My fave pub in Woverhampton city centre
Now, call me an idiot, but for some reason, I thought it was a great idea to go and watch our Newcastle match straight after the Wolves game to meet the fella. I didn’t take into account that the pub would obviously be rammed, or that a DJ would be on the go…
Anyway, it was a good laugh the Wolves lot were in high spirits and as long as I could see our match on the big screen I was happy.
Virgil scores after 13 minutes and I’m up on my feet, mainly because he’d also won me some money for scoring first and at any time during the match. At which point some Wolves wench came over asked me if I was a Liverpool fan (na love I just jumped up out me seat cause I fancy Virgil van Dijk…….) once she’d confirmed I was a Liverpool fan she started calling me a wanker… charming. You travel the whole of Italy watching your club with different fans and different people and nobody says sod all, I come back to Wolverhampton and one of my own yam yams calls me a wanker good times.
Back to the football and Newcastle equalise, much to the hilarity of some people in the pub, meanwhile, I’m fuming. Mo Salah scores and I’m up again, mainly in relief at this point. Little did I know things would get even more tricky for Liverpool.
Rondon isn’t in my fantasy team for nothing and he punished Liverpool at 54 minutes on Saturday night. I just couldn’t believe it, there was still plenty of time left but Newcastle looked strong, so much for Rafa doing us a favour!
The clock ticked on, Salah was stretchered off and things just began to look very gloomy for the Reds. I just kept thinking we can’t make it this far and then fall at the penultimate hurdle, we deserved to at least be in with a shout on the last day of the season.
Then, the absolute hero that is Divock Origi popped up with another massive, massive goal for Liverpool. A header from a free-kick whipped in by Shaqiri gave the Reds the win. Several ciders down by now I went absolutely mad in the pub, screaming my bloody head off, if any were in doubt, Wolves fans in the pub knew clearly who I supported now.
And there we have it, it’s now late on Sunday evening, no work tomorrow as it’s Bank Holiday Monday and as I type all I can think about is Jamie Vardy. Please god Leicester just nick a draw will you?!
Whatever happens over the final two matches of the season for Liverpool I am immensely proud of our team. We may fall at the hands of Barcelona but it’s not through a lack of trying and if we fail to win the league on 94, 95 or 97 points that’s just unprecedented.
Enjoy the end of the season folks, wherever you are watching!