A Liverpool fan (of 40 years apparently) phoned into The Wright Stuff on Monday to say that he was “ashamed” to now be called a Liverpool fan and that King Kenny was no longer the King in his eyes. Dozens more have phoned, emailed, tweeted to various radio stations, websites etc to convey a similar message. For being so gullibly led by the gutter press in this country, these fans who have turned on their club should be ashamed of themselves.
The press and associated media outlets in this country have hounded Suarez since the original incident on the basis that any story that involves racism is a) likely to generate enormous interest and thereby sell more copies and b) enables them to take such a moral high ground because nobody ever dares to take the side of a person accused of racism. We should all perhaps remember that the definition of racism mentions nothing of colour but is simply a derogatory or offensive reference or prejudice against someone’s origins. The same gutter press will, in June, if England happen to play against France or worse Germany trot out the inevitable far more blatant racism that refers to national stereotype or the obvious World wars.
Ferguson, who doesn’t deserve a mention of his title, must be rubbing his hands with glee that he has had the opportunity to take a swipe at Liverpool and Suarez when absolutely nobody will have the guts to take the opposing view in public. If Suarez is hounded out of Liverpool and out of this country he will bask in the glorious achievement of yet another manipulation of the media and their mindless listeners and readers.
It is time for a little perspective. The most stupid thing that Suarez MAY have done is to mislead the club by saying that he was going to shake hands with Evra. However, we don’t even know that this is the case. In any event this is a matter for Liverpool to deal with internally. If this matter is taken aside, it is no more than a snubbed gesture because Suarez still feels aggrieved at the complaint made by Evra. This does not warrant the coverage given and the hatred direction towards him. It is a handshake, a false gesture before a football match that the FA impose on clubs to demonstrate supposed sportsmanship. It is a gesture that achieves nothing, other than to highlight ones that don’t happen (Terry vs Bridge, Terry vs Ferdinand). A hand shake after the game gives a far better indication of sportsmanship because the player is not compelled to shake hands with anyone and therefore by doing so can demonstrate a positive attitude to competition.
John Henry, Dalglish and Suarez have all issued apologies because they may finally have worked out that taking the wrong side in any disagreement about colour prejudice in this country is pointless, regardless of whether you have a valid argument or not. What is now worrying is that Suarez must feel he is the most hated person in the country when some of his own fans are turning on him and I doubt we will see him play football in England after the end of this season. Ferguson, the FA and the media are the only winners if that happens, not Liverpool.