Occasionally, this columnist will sigh in exasperation at the petty squabbling that seems to be so prevalent amongst the diverse collective known as Liverpool supporters. It’s normally testy difference-of-opinion stuff but sometimes it can be ugly, bile-laden posturing, revealing the ignorance and unpleasantness of the individuals in question. Mute buttons were made for these people. Yet, for all one may cringe at such Twitter and Facebook keyboard hardmen, offering each other out for scraps that they know will never happen, at least they are not Arsenal fans. Never go full Arsenal.
After a draw against Manchester City on Sunday, the bluds and the fams were in full civil war mode. As ever, the cameras of Arsenal Fan TV caught some unpalatable exchanges, which they absolutely in no way set up or encourage. At all. The most recent broadcast featured some outraged Gooners attempting to stop the recording and threaten the host. Meanwhile, back in the stadium, a scene of comically awful attempted fighting played out in front of the watching world. Truly, the ineptitude and half-heartedness of the intended violence served as a fitting metaphor for the travails of the team they all support.
The fighting words coming from vanquished Everton boss, Ronald Koeman, were the focus of yesterday’s column but the violent play that was central to the Dutchman’s odd comments is continuing to create headlines today, as Dejan Lovren passed judgement on Ross Barkley. The Croatian, who was solid in his first appearance since January 31st, nearly had his shin snapped by the Toffees’ would-be tough guy. Even with his wet-look curls and sulky demeanour, however, Barkley was fooling nobody and Lovren was disappointed by the Evertonian’s attitude.
“That is the only thing I do not like,” said the centre-half, referring to Barkley’s failure to acknowledge his violent play. “If you make a hard challenge then be open about it and say sorry or something like that. Don’t talk to the referee and say it was not a foul. I think everyone saw it, especially me, but now it is over. If I show you my leg, you will be ‘Eeeewww!’ (pulls a face). I won’t, because it will be the headlines tomorrow if I show you my leg. It was a tough challenge, but we have seen it many times before and if I talk it will be all over the newspapers.”
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