From Shanks to Socialism to Suarez. More than a 100 years apart. #SHANKLY100

Posted by Hinesy on August 13, 2013, 07:07:46 PM

He must be spinning in his grave. What I'd give to see Shankly manage Suarez. But then again, would he recognise any of today's footballers? Or the demons and greeds that drive them?

When Shankly's 100th birthday is coming up, it feels more than perhaps a 1000 years ago that he fought for bonus payments for the Liverpool players after reaching the '65 cup final. When his innate understanding of what the link was between not just club and supporter but club and community firmly sowed the seeds of 'specialness' that was to become what Liverpool should be about.

Now Carragher is perhaps a dying breed of those who maintain the link with the city, the people and the community - those people who pay his wages. Suarez's actions and greed shows that he cares not who pays for his fancy goods, his loyalty lies frankly with his the wallet and agent not the stands and fans.

We all talk about how different football is from when we were now't but Boys Pen Fodder; but really the gulf is truly demonstrated when you look at the legacy that Bill left, and how its treated today by those who consider football to be nothing more than a plc .

Its not sad necessarily, its perhaps more disappointing, that the players of today care not for the cultural history of what Liverpool is (or was) (and why should they when the owners care less?)

I wonder if the touching of the This Is Anfield sign has any meaning for players today? If the notion of playing for Liverpool is anything more than a way in to the Premiership?

When I look back at Shankly's time, and I was a young child for most of it; its not the cups nor the teams that he created, its not the sayings or the players he brought in, its the socialism and community and ethos of what it is to have a team and city linked, inextricably together, moving together as a mighty momentum when the players know the fans are there for them and respect that. Acknowledge it, and let that sense influence their decisions in their careers.

That's why I'll always have respect for Gerrard. When Jose's pretty ankles were turning his head, he was reminded by his dad of what it was to play for Liverpool, what it meant. And the mere fact he knew it meant something, meant something to me.

Shankly, for me, created Liverpool's identity more than any other manager. Bob will be always my favourite manager, and all that. Kenny knew too, how the blood of the club flowed through the city's veins, but it was Bill who with all his charisma, and that gruff force of nature that was his way, made us Red.

The Reds are coming up the Hill boys. Bill's at our head, and frankly I wish he was here now to take aside certain players and remind them truly,  properly, this is what playing for Liverpool means.

You may say I'm a dreamer, and those days are gone, but when we reflect on our lost heroes, emotion and nostalgic pride will always fire me up for the future and steel my determination to try and make things better in my own small way, more than antipathy and regret ever will.

I miss you and your kind Mr Shankly.

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