You’ll Never Walk Alone
Liverpool FC is ranked as the most successful soccer team ever in the English League with an unparalleled record in domestic and European ลิเวอร์พูล competition. However the history of the club is
marked by sadness as much as it is by celebration.
The Early Years
Bizarrely, this incredibly successful soccer team was born as the result of a rent dispute! Anfield – the home of
Liverpool FC – was originally the home ground of Everton. When they (Everton) won the English Football League Championship in 1891, Anfield owner John Houlding tried to increase their rent substantially. When Everton refused to pay, and no agreement was reached, the club decamped to a new ground at Goodison
Park, leaving only three players behind.
Determined to see soccer remain at Anfield, Houlding recruited 13 professional players from Scotland and created the first Liverpool FC side.
The club was unable to secure election to the league until 1893, when they joined the second division. Ending their first season with an unbeaten record, they were promoted to
division one, and have never been lower than the second division again in their entire history.
Liverpool won their first Football League championship in 1901, and their second only a few years later in 1906. That same year, a significant expansion of Anfield took lace with the
construction of a massive cinder bank behind the home goal. This bank – named “the kop” after a British defeat in the Boer War where many Liverpuddlian soldiers died – is the sentimental home of every Liverpool fan.
It wasn’t until 1914 that Liverpool played in their first FA Cup final, and it was 1921/2 before they won it – though they did then go on to win it again the next year!
Most great soccer teams are defined in terms of their great players, and of course Liverpool has had its fair share of stars over the years. But it is managers more than anyone else who have defined the different eras of Liverpool’s history – starting with perhaps the most famous of them all; Bill Shankly.
Shankly joined Liverpool as manager in 1959 when Liverpool were languishing in the second division. Although he had no real experience of managing big teams, it was Shankly who firmly set
Liverpool on the path to success and established the management and training systems that served subsequent managers well for the next 30 years or more.
The changing fortunes of Liverpool – and Shankly’s personal charisma – resulted in the club fielding the greatest players of the time, including Emlyn Hughes, Kevin Keegan, Ian St John,
John Toshack and Roger Hunt.
Shankly took Liverpool back into the first division in 1962, the season in which Roger Hunt scored a record (to this day) 41 league goals. First division championships and FA Cup victories
followed through the 1960s and 70s, and then came Liverpool’s first European trophy (the UEFA Cup) in 1973.
In 1974, Shankly’s shock retirement resulted in the promotion of his assistant, Bob Paisley, and the beginning of a new chapter in Liverpool history. This continuity of management
may well be one of the secrets of Liverpool’s success, as two of Paisley’s player signings – Kenny Dalglish and Graeme Souness – later became managers of the team.
If Shankly is remembered as the manager that turned Liverpool around, Paisley is the manager who made it all pay and the record he established for winning soccer trophies was unbroken for twenty years after his retirement.
His record in nine years of management:
- 6 Football League Championships
- 3 European Cups
- 1 UEFA Cup
- 3 League Cups (successive years)
- 1 European Super Cup
- 3 Charity Shields
In the 1982/3 season, Liverpool won both the Football League Championship and the League Cup for the second consecutive year. Following this victory, Bob Paisley retired, handing over to Joe Fagan – another internal promotion to manager at Anfield.
Fagan only stayed for two seasons, but they were spectacularly successful seasons, winning the League Championship for the third consecutive year as well as Liverpool’s fourth
European Cup. As well as the established squad that remained from the Shankly years, Fagan was able to field players such as Ian Rush, Alan Hansen and goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar.