Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Red or Dead-I Turn Into An Anorak.

I don’t much care for the secondary market in memorabilia.

Autographs and all that sort of stuff don’t do anything for me.

It is sometimes easy to dismiss collectors and their habits. I want bronze.

What is it that we all collect stuff? What drives a stamp collector?

Is it more like a disorder than a vocation? Who am I to say?

Then the other day while on the Internet my finger hovered over the mouse in my right hand and I pressed the button, suddenly I owned an autographed picture of the Liverpool team, from when I do not know it just seemed cheap, so I bought it.

I then wondered whether it was damaged or whether there was something that I had not noticed about it, why did no one bid.

I picked it up and Wow it was the team of…well that’s easier than it looks.

David Fairclough, Ginger, was in there, and I say that with regret because as cruel teenagers that what we used to call him when he watched us playing football on the school playing field next to where he lived. We knew he had trials for Liverpool and how he got his own back on all us horrid little boys the night he scored the goal against St Etienne. It was explosive I had no nails left that night.

Shortly after he came and knocked the ball around on he field, did Davey or Mr Fairclough as we now called him.

He has been in the shop since and I did not own up to it.

Dagliesh or Dog leash as he was called on his testimonial, is there, bottom shelf.

Keegan had left for £550, 000 and they signed Dagleish for £440,000 what a bargain.

Makes the price that Suarez the cannibal is worth look a bit ridiculous. Tommy Smith is not there and he would have battered Suarez the way he has made a fool of the Football club.

I bet any player in the photo would have played for Liverpool for nothing…well except Yozzer Hughes look-alike Graham Souness who was always a bit greedy.

Bill Shankly would have sacked him on the spot.

It’s all about money now.

I claim I am the only one who ever bunked into the Boys Pen…yes into the pen.

It was the deciding match of the season, remember the one that Bill Shankly took off his jacket, and proclaimed, to all, with his red shirt. I am one of you. Leeds United was the big team and we had to break their stranglehold under Don Revie and we did that and took the title.

I had got my place in the Pen, as it was only 20 or 30p or some silly price leaving 10p of my milk round money for a packet of cigs.

I got caught smoking once when the Old Man, who was in the paddock, was watching me.

You would wait for one of the coppers on guard of the lovely little treasures in the Pen to turn the other way or stop someone getting over the 10ft high railings with spikes, and you were off, skimming up and through the gap in the barbed wire that seemed to be left there to entice you to have a go.

He got the end of my leg this time but I was too quick for him as he adjusted his helmet I give him a cheeky grin the other side of the fence.

The game started and it was bad, they used to say the ground held 65,000 but there must have been 80,000 in the ground that day.

I was continually picked up and swirled around as if on a tempestuous sea.

I would be moved yards in one direction, then the other, and the risk was always to ensure you did not get trapped and pushed on to a barrier. It was too much. I was going to chance it.

Off I went up the railings of the boy’s pen stockade and through the wire nicking my collar as I ducked my head through.

There was plod standing there waiting for me…. to throw me back into the Kop, the Spion Kop and all its dangers to a young whip of a kid.

‘What’s he doing’ I thought ‘That’s being a bit too conscientious’.

He seemed to stall, a look of ‘what’s he up to’ on his face.

“Let me in I am getting crushed and he let me in and helped me down. So there was Plod was standing there adjusting his helmet again bemused as nobody had ever thought to bunk into the Boys Pen before.

Jimmy Case is lower left it used to be so funny standing in the Kop and he would get the ball and the Kop would collectively gasp urging him to shoot because he had a shot like a rocket. Then you would see those around the goal start to realise that if he missed they were in the line of fire. You can see it on the old replays sometimes the terrified look on the faces of those behind the goal.

Steve Heighway is there. He and Brian Hall had degrees apparently

Heighway was the youth team coach that brought Steven Gerrard and others through from the Academy. Only to have his services dispensed with by a cocky manager who then buggered off for a bigger payday.

Phil Thompson came to our school once to give an inspiring talk. He tells a great tale of the day after winning The European cup. He had ‘borrowed’ the trophy, and took it to celebrate in the Peacock Pub in Kirkby where they had a lock in.

It took them half an hour to find the cup the next day when they all woke up safely under a table still full of champagne.

Just imagine that today ‘Tommo’ borrows the European Cup for the night.

Sammy Lee is there, he of sheer hard work and determination, he used to drink in Kirkland’s on Hardman Street Saturday nights after the match.

He sank his money into a bar called Rumours on Smithdown Road.

That’s what footballers did then in the days before they featured on the Sunday Times rich List.

Alan Kennedy had a rough ride he died young he was a nice man.

I saw some of his cups and trophies for sale once at Charnick Richard but did not buy them.

There are lots of others in the picture I had better stop now I will be here all day. I am turning into an anorak.

Can anyone date the picture I think the player far right on the top shelf may be a clue as he was only around for a season.

It looks like I have got caught up in this memorabilia myself, what’s happened to me? And with the new book out about Mr Shankly by David Peace, about the life of the inspirational man, entitled Red or Dead, which will be a Birthday present that I hope I get the chance to read.

No comments:

Post a Comment