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Andy's Articles

andyclegs

Andy C Legs
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
244
Hi, just wrote this little piece about Sunday, maybe have a read. All the best, Andy.

 

andyclegs

Andy C Legs
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
244
Hi reds, I just finished this piece off about West Ham. Maybe have a read. Maybe leave a much appreciated comment. Andy

Red Lippy

West Ham Utd v Liverpool

Wednesday, 29th of January, 2020.

It was just that I wanted to be there, if and when Liverpool won this game. With my other ‘family’.

Davie answered the door and soon Fudge followed – more smooths and a cwtch; well, how could I refuse; she was everyone’s dog but Davie was her master.

I thought that I heard, just for an instant a female voice and no, it was not any of the three girls – but, but Carly’s, Davie’s wife’s voice.

Davie tried to convince me otherwise.

‘No, Carly’s not here’ he said, trying not to lie, or in Carly’s words, talk!

I scanned the table. There were four cups there. Like in a nursery rhyme, one for Deano, one for me, one for Davie and, and, well.

‘There’s four cups Davie, so Carly is here’.

‘Well observed inspector Crouch’, Deano said as Carly emerged from the kitchen. The gang was all here.

I did not fail to glance at the mound of sweets in the bowl too. ‘I did not get any’, I expressed sadly.

‘Don’t worry Crouch, we just got these from over the shop’ as I looked down enviously.

So, we caught-up and I told Carly that I had been heading for the bank on Monday morning, when she and her half-sister Lauren had been, ‘Going to the gym’ with their dad – a Manc.

‘Did I tell you where I am going in September?’, Deano said, looking straight faced as Alisson facing a free-kick.

‘Pearl, Har-bour’ I replied, thinking about that hulk of a rusting battleship which is still there after the surprise attack in December 1941, which was as quick as a Liverpool counter.

So, to the Liverpool team. The usual back-five which if I starred long and hard enough at my key-board – it should by now, type the reds line-up itself. Alisson in goals, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson at left-back. Gini Wijnaldum, captain Jordan Henderson and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. With no Sadio Mane to call on due to a hamstring and hopefully back after the International Break, Divock Origi was paired with Bobby Firmino and Mo Salah.

West Ham were managed by David Moyes. Well, we all knew how he would set them-up, think of a double decker and double it so it made one of those bendy, stretchy buses which are prevalent on the continent. They were without Antonio and to be fair, I was not interested in them – so long as our collective team effort kept them out then that’s all I was worried about. Believe me though, I was a tad nervous – especially as we’d dropped vital points here last season; which cost us in the end.

All white top with black shorts. Just like in the 1980’s. Love it. And we were passing the ball ala that vintage too. But us being greedy and spoilt now, wanted it to go forward quicker and more effectively.

‘We need to get behind them’ I said and as though the lads heard us, Andy Robertson powered down the wing and put in an inviting cross which was missed. It was the way forward.

The commentator said about ‘The Ox’ having scored there for Arsenal. ‘And he did for Liverpool’, I pipped-up, having discovered by now that young baby Kelsey had sneaked behind the sofa, and sprung-up like a Jackie – in – the box, as soon as I saw her mop of golden hair.

Love her cotton socks.

Andy Robertson again got free after some more quick, slick passing and whipped in a ‘please score me’ ball which Origi missed at Fabianski’s right near post and also eluded Mo Salah.

‘We should have scored then!’ Deano said, exasperated.

Robertson then got put in by Mo Salah, after an intricate passing move but just failed to find the left bottom corner of Fabianski’s goal – this was more like it.

Liverpool, as it often has been the case this season, had grown into the game and moved up a few notches. They tigerishly began fighting for the ball higher-up the pitch and from this, Origi got fouled from near the six-yard box.

‘Pen-alt-tee!’ Deano bellowed, then added, ‘but hang on, let’s wait for VAR!’. How terrible, as it spoilt the moment but we can’t really complain this season.

It had to be Mo Salah to take it – though I did think about Bobby or Hendo. I was desperate for him to score, desperate for Liverpool to win – desperate for the – at this moment in time there seems to be a problem with my keyboard as it has refused me permission to write the ‘t’ word (no that’s enough, it just said!!!).

Mo Salah smashed home the spot-kick, putting it to Fabianski’s right.

‘YES! YES!’ I shouted, raising both arms aloft, as though I was lifting something shiny (now Andrew, I’m not going to tell you again, my keyboard just warned me, in my late father’s sternest voice!).

One nil up. The breakthrough. Tidy.

At one stage four players hounded the one West Ham player on the edge of his area.

‘That’s what I love to see!’ I shouted as Kelsey expressed her desire that I turn my volume down!

The home team had half chances but there was always Virgil van Dijk and the equally impervious Joe Gomes to snuff out any danger and of course Alisson.

At the break we were treated to not only a lovely cuppa made by Carly, God it was needed, but also Birthday Cake. Victoria sponge – it was lush! You see it was Davie’s 21st the day after! No, I can never recall how old he is – suffice to say at least ten years older than me; my range went from 32 to 38 for him. He liked the lower figure!

‘Thirty-eight Crouch’ he admitted. He didn’t look a day over 22!

Carly was going to treat him to a meal, ‘And maybe use your vouchers Crouch’ she suggested. It would be a change ‘just the two’ of them going out – without the kids. ‘Then maybe a drink on Saturday night’ - so that was something to look forward to.

Liverpool kept control. A strangle-hold but on rare occasions the Hammers attacked and they may as well have because Alisson kept the scoreline down to nil as he made two-point blank stops as Trent somehow managed to hit his right post and the ball rebounded out to Van Dijk to gratefully clear.

In between this though, Liverpool caught the home team with a sucker-punch. Blowing their bubbles right in the air.

From a West Ham attack, on the edge of the reds area, the ball was looped over the top, by Henderson if my memory serves me correctly and then Mo Salah was on it in a flash and with a delicious ball served it on a plate (which the finest five star chefs could not have conjured-up), as Mo flicked the ball with the outside of his left boot to send Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain arrowing in on goal, where he finished low and hard, into the bottom right of Fabianski’s goal.

More celebrations.

‘Done and Dusted’, Deano said.

Quick as a flash I replied, ‘That’s what you said Sunday and looked what happened!’.

‘He’s in my dream team’ Deano beamed, as again, with Carly already warning me, I flashed a middle finger at him and Davie but let Carly off with a verbal warning!

‘There’s only one team – LIVERPOOL!’ I shouted at them for the umpteenth time!

Liverpool should have scored more as I recall Bobby Firmino jigging his way through but not finding any end product as Liverpool toyed with the home team. They just seem to have a knack of slowing it down and going at their own pace and we later discussed this.

‘We will have to stop shouting and accept it. That this is the way they play now’. Too true Deano.

Curtis Jones came on and it was very heartening to see. I just feel that he is going to be more than a bit part player in less than a few years.

Kaitlyn, the middle girl had made an appearance and she was worried that she would get that virus which is spreading from China. What was she like!

‘It’s just a head cold’, Carly said, as Kaitlyn had wrapped herself-up in a wool-like top. Kids – who’d have them…

‘We’re champions of the world’ sang the travelling fans as some even dared to sing the other ditty which Deano pointed out to me.

‘Look Crouch, you’re not telling them off!’ whilst inwardly I was lapping it up but did not dare openly say it.



The fat lady, with the red dress and shoes, who could be asked to sing, is now maybe, just maybe, perhaps putting on her red lippy.



30/1/20. Andy C Legs 1474
 

Commando

Well-Known Member
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Sep 23, 2016
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2,560
Another great read Andy. Like Kaitlin Our Grand-Daughter Georgia was worried about catching the Coronavirus. Her fear has now been made many times worse with the news that folk returning from China courtesy of the RAF will be housed two miles from our house in Arrowe Park Hospital.
By the by, I was wondering why they are being bussed all the way up here to the Wirral? My nephew says it’s because we’re a peninsula with water on three sides. He reckons that should there be an outbreak the whole peninsula will be quarantined.
I might get out now while I can.:D
 

andyclegs

Andy C Legs
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
244
Another great read Andy. Like Kaitlin Our Grand-Daughter Georgia was worried about catching the Coronavirus. Her fear has now been made many times worse with the news that folk returning from China courtesy of the RAF will be housed two miles from our house in Arrowe Park Hospital.
By the by, I was wondering why they are being bussed all the way up here to the Wirral? My nephew says it’s because we’re a peninsula with water on three sides. He reckons that should there be an outbreak the whole peninsula will be quarantined.
I might get out now while I can.:D
I like it. I think it could be that they could block all the roads off and close the tunnels!!! Any time you want a bolt hole in Wales mate, you know where to come, as we say here, there will always be a welcome in the hills!!! .
 

Commando

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Sep 23, 2016
Messages
2,560
I like it. I think it could be that they could block all the roads off and close the tunnels!!! Any time you want a bolt hole in Wales mate, you know where to come, as we say here, there will always be a welcome in the hills!!! .

Yeah, I've got an "Outbreak" type scenario going on in my head. We need Dustin Hoffman here pronto. :D
 

andyclegs

Andy C Legs
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
244
Hi all you good reds, I have just tried to write this little piece about Tuesday. If you get five; maybe have a read. All the best, Andy.
 

andyclegs

Andy C Legs
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
244
Hi all you good reds, I have just tried to write this little piece about Tuesday. If you get five; maybe have a read. All the best, Andy.
Purple Scarf

Liverpool v Shrewsbury Town

FA Cup 4th Round Replay

4th of February, 2020.

I wrapped my purple scarf around baby Kelsey, as she was twiddling her thumbs on Davie’s mobile.

Seven – year -old Kelsey was playing a game – just like Liverpool’s kids were about to; some of them were only ten years old than her.

Davie flicked through the channels, trying, like any red I knew, to get a decent stream.

‘I’m sure it’s on here, Crouch’ he said, as ‘Bein’ came through, as if by magic.

We were not sure though if that it was the right channel, but he then found out that a vehicle had over-turned on the M6 so kick-off had been delayed and we would not have to settle for watching Oxford v the Geordie ‘Barcodes’ Newcastle.

It was only me and Davie, as he told me that Deano, was staying at home. ‘Faggot’, I jested, smiling, as we all three hardly miss a game together like Alisson missing a cross.

Sweets were in the bowl – some soft winey gum streaky types, but soon my pink and white staple ‘Refresher’ ones were poured in – saved over from Saturday night when I had shot straight to see the ‘boys’ after the rugby, for a post-match analysis following the Southampton win. I did not need to drink as I was heady – giddy even, on a lead which I still can’t ‘Rubiks Cube’ figure out how we’ve got!

So, to this game.

A replay which our manager, Jurgen Klopp had insisted that he would not be at or any of the first team squad. That was of course not totally adhered to as one James Milner, whom the camera panned to on several occasions, was there amongst the crowd. What a man – he was at Anfield of his own free will and had already offered the lads encouragement. One day he will be a manager – let’s hope not too soon as he is the ‘Swiss Army knife’ of the squad, due to him being able to fill so many positions.

Neil Critchley was the home manager – as he usually is for the Under -23’s which lined-up for this replay. What an experience he and they were gaining. Playing in front of a packed house as well.

As I had stated on ‘Twitter’; when the whistle blows, I just want Liverpool to win; this game was no different.

Me and Davie did not shout anything detrimental because the young lads were playing with such authority and growing confidence, as they attacked the Anfield Road End, that if you blinked, they could have easily been mistaken for the First Team.

They were more than holding their own.

Neco Williams was the stand-out player at right-back and he had one or two chances go just wide. Certainly, he is one to put on the subs bench now. What a prospect and he is Welsh as well – a real bonus for me.

The sweets were going down well. ‘So moreish’ as an absent Deano would have said. I think next time I’ll have to just to be done with it, and get three packs. They were as addictive as the ball was to sticking like glue to our very young reds.

I and Davie did not know all the players but the one called, Cain, was more than able even though he looked as though he should have been locked in his bedroom revising for a school test in the morning.

The all-blue Shrewsbury were being out-skilled by basically Liverpool’s Youth Team. Curtis Jones, being given the honour of being made Liverpool’s youngest ever captain for the night, showed porn like filth skill when he somehow nut-megged an opponent on the right of the Shrews area. It was skill ala Salah and it was a joy to watch as much as re-runs of ‘Number Six’ being won.

There was a rare scare or two as the visitors had the audacity to attack the Kop End, defended stoutly by two young Dutch Masters, schooled and tutored no doubt by possibly the next ‘Player of the Year’, Virgil van Dijk, in the form of the ginger haired Sepp van den Berg and Ki-Jan Hoever, who cleaned every danger without being noticed, such was their professional performances.

Jelly Babies were poured into the bowl at the break. Kelsey had wrapped my scarf back around her at several stages of the half - happily playing on the phone. Such an angel she is getting. No hassle or tantrums at all, before she had to brush her teeth prior to Davie calling her to ‘go-up’.

It was a call, which some of our kids could have had but instead, they were preparing to come out in the second half and attack a roaring Kop End that greeted them enthusiastically as though they had tread the lush green turf of Anfield all their young precocious precious playing lives.

Me and Davie got concerned as Shrewsbury had an attacking spell – causing problems as the kids lost their composure at one stage but they came through that dodgy period. In fact, there was a ten minute period when the kids penned Shrewsbury into their own area as they won a succession of corners and if a man from Mars had come to see the game, he would not have known that the players in red were the Youth Team players, up against seasoned League Division One opponents.

A cross came over from the Shrewsbury left and a bit of skill which resulted in Shaun Whalley, heading into the net, from close range, to give the visitors the lead.

I was really gutted and felt that Liverpool would have a mountain to climb.

Davie though had begun protesting that the goal had been offside.

I dismissed this as I thought that at least it had been a great experience for the ‘Milky Bar Klopp Kids’.

But hang-on. VAR was checking ‘the goal’ and as we sat there, the camera panned to Sam Ricketts, the Shrewsbury manager and before the final decision came, I knew what had happened as I heard the rippled roaring Kop, celebrating the goal being chalked-off.

It was a crucial moment.

Press, press, press at every opportunity. Never giving the visitors a chance to put their foot on the deck and play. It was just like watching Liverpool’s first team, only the boys were much nippier. Klopp must have been loving it.

Then, after about 75 minutes, their keeper, O’Leary, kicked the ball down the middle and one of our players eagerly went to challenge for the ball and a Shrewsbury defender, Ro-Shaun Williams, headed back to safety. However, the ball incredibly found its way into the top left-hand corner of O’Leary’s net, for a comical own-goal!

Oh my, I just jumped off the sofa and ran towards the kitchen in celebration, shock, surprise and joy. It was just nuts; as not even VAR could erase it.

The kids were ahead.

Did they listen to me when our keeper, Kelleher, was on the ball, as I shouted, ‘TIME!’ - as if he could hear me above that din!

Liverpool tried to get a second as Harvey Elliott played a less than successful pass forward through the centre-circle on a break-away. A better ball and Wirral born striker, Joe Hardy, a January signing from Brentford, would have been clean through on goal.

The lads more than held their own. In their own back-yard as though they were out late playing under the white glare of street lamp-lights, like we all used to when growing-up, like during the war, (well, The Falklands one for me!).

The kids had done very well and I wondered if any of them owned a long purple scarf.



5/2/20. 1299 A. Phillips
 

andyclegs

Andy C Legs
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
244
Hi reds, just wrote this little piece about yesterday. Maybe if you get five, have a look see. Any comments will be very much appreciated. By the way - I like Reckordlig cider!!!

In Klopp we trust

Norwich City v Liverpool

15TH of February, 2020.

Deano greeted me when I got to Davie’s house – wearing that all white away top – lush; Nike, take note.

The guy from next door was there. Tools being collected, for more work was being carried out on the Wheatstone abode. This time to Kelsey’s room, as the electrics were sorted. There is still a long way to go though, despite Davie having knocked a part of a wall away. The kids are getting bigger; so too are their rooms.

It had seemed like an age since the last game – Shrewsbury and even longer since the first team had played; Southampton. A lot had happened since then. Manchester City had been slapped with a two - year European ban; was the main talking point – but will they get a League points retrospective deduction as well; wouldn’t that be something! Stevie G may get his title medal afterall - as this season just goes into an even deeper dream; one day someone will wake me up.

Davie and Deano had beers in hand by the time the teams came out – me, just a tea; tidy.

Liverpool fielded the usual suspects; Alisson, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson as wing-backs. Joe Gomes and Virgil van Dijk at centre-back. Then there was Gini Wijnaldum, captain Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita getting a run-out in midfield. Up top was Mo Salah, Bobby Firmino and, despite Sadio Mane being on the bench, Alex-Oxlade Chamberlain. Not a bad line-up.

As well as facing Norwich, Liverpool would have to contend with storm ‘Denis’ which was hitting the country but you would not have thought so as the reds pressed immediately and began controlling the game. Bobby Firmino in particular was showing flashes of skill and the three of us agreed that he was on his game - when he is the opposition can usually look-out.

However, after about twenty minutes, with sweets going down in the bowl and beers being sunk at a quicker rate than Leicester’s Title bid, we began to get frustrated as Deano got annoyed and also Davie at the lack of cut and thrust. We seemed blunt. In a counter-argument Deano said, ‘We must be patient. They always find a way’.

‘They feel themselves into games’ I said, as outwardly I tried not to shout.

The opportunities were rare and if truth be told, I can’t recall many, expect when Norwich broke our defensive line with a ball over the top which set the one player marginally ahead of Virgil and away. But, but, just at the point of shooting, he played it to Pukki, who was thwarted by Alisson who had sprung cat-like out of his goal, on the right of his area, and now pulled out his outstretched right arm, to flick the ball away from his opponents feet. It was a great piece of keeping. What anticipation and timing by Alisson! It could have been a game changing moment but VAR may have over-ruled any goal, due to offside. Alisson was not to know that though. As much as we admire what Salah and Mane et al do – if Liverpool do win something; Alisson’s contribution will have been immeasurable.

The reds nearly scored when Bobby Firmino wriggled his way through and his shot was palmed away but Naby Keita, with the goal at his mercy, somehow managed to shoot the ball straight at Krul - anywhere either side and it would have been in, as Deano frustratedly pointed out.

I was wary that Norwich had beaten Man City there earlier in the season, on the counter and did not want a repeat result in this game. Norwich had had far too many chances in the first game at Anfield, which Deano could not recall, that we had seen in his ‘pent-house’ flat, well, it is on the top floor! So, Norwich knew how to create chances against us.

Baby Kelsey was hovering round and Davie teased her that she had let all the boys kiss her at the party she had been to earlier. So funny. Then she slid on the floor in a fashion which Bobby would have been happy to celebrating one of his away goals – I mean, he never scores at home; does he? However, give it time, you never know.

At the break, whilst Davie did some more hoovering, I chatted to Deano about going out for some food for my birthday next month. I had suggested the Saturday night; because my brother would be off then (he works alternative weekends you see). This arrangement was half way to being sorted before Deano had gently reminded me that Liverpool just happened to be playing on the 21st of March, against Palace. What a schoolboy error; especially as I base everything around Liverpool’s fixtures!! ‘That might be the’ – at this point my type-writer has stopped me in my tracks and has issued an official warning to my brain not to type the rest of the sentence, as I don’t want to mention the un-mentionable – ala, Jordan Henderson!! Yes well, you all know what I mean. So, it could be a case of a possible Sunday afternoon meal instead -we will see.

I had shouted at the reds and to quote Deano, ‘I hope he (Klopp) had fired some ff’s into them’ in the dressing room - precisely.

Tea having been made and more sweets poured into the bowl – I was advised to leave my ones for Tuesday, the second half began. It was better.

Liverpool seemed more on it and Andy Robertson began to be on the ball and putting crosses into the area. We even began to shoot as Naby Keita blasted one from the edge of the area for Krul to produce a finger tip save over. From one of the corners, Virgil van Dijk had an arrowing header saved and then got man-handled by two players in a manner which would have been more accustomed to a game played at The Millennium Stadium. No foul – no chance; what a joke.

‘Get the Ox off’ one of us suggested and ‘get Mane on’. This was surely the only option. We were crying out for Sadio’s pace and directness.

Fairs do’s to Jurgen Klopp, he must have been wired to our brains. For soon after the switch was made along with Fabinho coming on for Keita and this allowed Jordan Henderson – who was chasing every lost tackle or slip-shod pass in an effort to try and make sure this game did not pass us by (what a captain to have) - to move into a more advanced role.

Mane immediately made a difference as the front three began to link-up better and Robertson put a cracking ball across which Bobby Firmino nearly got to – ‘But why didn’t Mo, move to it as well?’ Deano asked, as Salah strangely stayed on the edge of the area.

Norwich were continually under the cosh it seemed and this was more like it.

Henderson looked-up, measured a ball forward into the area and Mane had no right whatsoever to latch his right foot onto the ball, control it, shift it to his left foot, and turn as deftly swiftly as a ballet dancer, to rifle the ball into the bottom right-hand corner of Krul’s net to make it 1-0.

I just went ‘Yesssssss’, turning, contortedly, with every nerve, into the arm of the sofa, in thankful prayer, saying, ‘I love him’ and at that moment, I did; I loved Sadio Mane with all my heart.

Even then VAR nearly intervened. Push, what push or foul on their player? Were they for real??? Never in a million years. The goal stood and it was scored after 77 patient (not) filled minutes as Liverpool had finally made the break-through. Just how important was that goal…

This immediately brought the Liverpool fans into song, singing the ditty which I just, just can’t type but we all know what was sung as my heart pounded in pride in possible trophy lifting anticipation.

‘Go on Crouch, aren’t you going to tell them off?’ asked Davie, as he began to take-up our fans mantle with Deano joining in with a fist for good measure! Heady times indeed.

Still the game was being played. Still only 1-0 but a comfortable one, even if Norwich had shot against Alisson’s left near post trying to catch out our brilliant Brazilian. Not a chance. ‘He would have got to it’ Davie said, confidently, as we later discussed the difference between Alisson and Karius. Night and day; night and day.

Liverpool could have scored another one as Trent put a great ball across which Bobby Firmino just could not connect to properly, but they were content to see the game out. It’s what they do. They just seem to do enough. To pace themselves. Incredible. I wonder if they will ever be able to cut loose again. It will no doubt be down to Klopp and what he wants.

In Klopp we trust.



16/2/20 1513

A. Phillips