A club that feeds off of a passionate fan base, Liverpool Football Club has been creating the most amazing, fairytale matches for generations. It seems as though the more eyes that are on the team and the higher the significance of the match, Liverpool tend to create more drama than usual, win or lose.
An unfortunate rarity in football is opposing fans mingling before, during or after matches. In Liverpool City Centre on Thursday night however, Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund fans joined together to sing their joined anthem, ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’.
After a first leg in Dortmund, in which the most memorable moment of the match was the rendition of the same song before kick-off, it was no surprise that the atmosphere was electric before and during the match.
As the fans were in full voice, the players were making their way to the stadium, expecting a warm welcome from both sets of fans. A warm welcome is an understatement for what preceded the kick-off, as both fans again found full voice and paid their tribute to the 96 victims of Hillsborough.
It was a humbling moment as the Dortmund fans held up banners revealing a huge ’96’ in yellow and black, to replicate the Kop’s red and white tribute.
As the game finally kicked off, the hope was for an epic match worthy of the amazing scenes before the match. What unfolded in the coming 90 minutes exceeded all expectation.
The game started in a flash, with Dortmund going 2-0 up inside 10 minutes, with goals from Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang and Liverpool could easily have had a couple themselves in the opening moments. The atmosphere was dampened marginally as half time approached.
At half time the Liverpool fans found full voice again trying to inspire their team, resembling shades of Istanbul.
Liverpool immediately responded as Origi pulled one back just two minutes into the second half and all of a sudden there was hope again. History, on the side of the Liverpool fans, allows them to believe in the unbelievable.
As tension built, Dortmund were to strike what seemed like the killer blow with just over half an hour to go as Marco Reus re-established Dortmund’s two goal lead.
Minutes later, two substitutions from Klopp turned the game on its head and Coutinho again gave the Livrpool fans a tiny glimmer of hope. 3-2 after 66 minutes and hardly a moment to draw breath since half time, the fans were resigned to losing their voices at this point as they continued to sing and chant.
Liverpool still needed two goals based on the away goals rule, and with 12 minutes left the roof nearly came off the Kop End as Mamadou Sakho of all people scored the equalizer. 3-3 on the night, 4-4 on aggregate.
As the clock struck 90 minutes Anfield was at fever pitch still, the fans belief never wavering were hopeful still. As Dejan Lovren rose to head James Milner’s cross, the stadium hit orbit. An unimaginable comeback consummated. The celebrations from the players, the fans and the always energetic Klopp, mirrored those of the team who beat Man City late in the 2013/2014 season.
Somehow Liverpool have developed an ability to create circumstances for themselves that seem insurmountable, but they always or almost always come out on top.
We remember the boys from Istanbul, we remember the boys from the FA Cup final in 2006 and we will always remember the boys from the night Liverpool turned Yellow and Black.