Liverpool supporters will keep their elaborate array of banners and flags on the Cup when their beloved team faces Newcastle on Saturday, after the club made a dramatic turnaround and withdrew from the European Super League.
In a crazy 48 hours, enraged Liverpool fans had initially announced that they would remove their flags and banners from the iconic Anfield grandstand in protest at the club signing up as one of the 12 founders of the Super League.
The Liverpool fan group Spion Kop 1906 initially said: ‘We, along with other groups involved in flags, will remove our flags from the Kop. We feel that we can no longer support a club that puts financial greed above game integrity. ‘
The flags and banners will remain on the Cup when Liverpool hosts Newcastle on Saturday
The reigning Premier League champions have since pulled the plug on their commitments to the ill-fated European venture, a move welcomed by the club’s supporters after widespread backlash to the plans.
In an updated statement on Wednesday morning, Spion Kop 1906, which hosts banners and flags, revealed: “ Following last night’s announcement that Liverpool FC will no longer participate in a ‘European Super League’, our flags will be hanging on the Kop. for Saturday’s home game.
As always, we are committed to supporting the team. We thank the players, and especially Jordan Henderson, for their support of the fans.
‘It has been great to see the solidarity between Liverpool fans, and also from fans of all clubs in recent days, and we should use this opportunity to bring about real change.’
The statement then heavily warned the owners of Liverpool’s Fenway Sports Group never to go against the fans again, as the supporters are the ‘real owners’ of the club.
The statement added: ‘For FSG, your persistent wrong decisions and lack of consultation with the fans on these big decisions were your ultimate downfall. Once again you have been addressed to the wrong people and your delay in making the statement is cowardly.
‘This is OUR club, not yours – never take us for granted because once again you’ve seen that it’s the fans who have the power, not the men with the suitcase.
“The fans are the real owners of the Football Club and our support will always be with the staff, the manager and the players – FOOTBALL WITHOUT FANS IS NOTHING.”
Spion Kop 1906 issued this statement after the suspension of the European Super League
Liverpool captain Henderson had taken the lead when Jurgen Klopp’s side got together to post their ‘collective position’ on the plans of the European Super League – making it abundantly clear that they had no way of being part of the project.
The players’ move came hours after the Liverpool captain called an emergency meeting with his fellow Premier League skippers on Tuesday to lead a response to the Super League proposals, as revealed exclusively by Sportsmail.
But while Spion Kop 1906 welcomed Liverpool’s change in tone, they were also quick to join UEFA for their proposed Champions League reforms – that would make the prestigious tournament more ‘elitist’.
The upheaval of UEFA would increase the total number of teams from 32 to 36 and the traditional group stage should be abolished.
Instead, a single league phase would be devised, encompassing all 36 teams participating, with each team guaranteed to get 10 ‘league phase’ matches.
Wednesday’s statement added: ‘While we are all fighting the new league, UEFA has implemented reforms that make the European Cup more elitist, with additional games and therefore costs for fans. It is important that we are all together to resist this too. ‘
After days of silence, John W Henry apologized for the Liverpool Super League debacle
Henry (center, pictured with wife Linda Pizzuti) apologized to Jurgen Klopp and his players
And Spion Kop, who admitted they welcomed the support of Sky and other media outlets in the protests against the Super League, claimed more needs to be done to help fans frozen amid rising ticket prices and changes in tee times.
“ We have welcomed the support that Sky and others in the media have shown to fans over the past few days, and we hope this leads them to look at their own treatment of fans and what they can do around the start times and match ticket. prices, and how ALL football fans are treated. This is just the beginning. ‘
Liverpool and the rest of the Premier League’s Big Six pulled the plug on their European Super League commitments late on Tuesday evening, leading to the company’s suspension.
And after two days of silence as widespread anger and rage across Europe erupted at the Super League’s proposals, Liverpool owner John W Henry finally appeared in a video message on Wednesday saying: ‘I want to apologize to all fans and supporters of Liverpool Football. Club for the outage I caused in the last 48 hours.
It goes without saying, but it must be said that the proposed project would never last without the support of the fans. No one ever thought otherwise in England. During these 48 hours you were very clear that it was not going to last. We heard you. I heard you.
Liverpool supporters have protested outside of Anfield against the Super League’s plans
And I want to apologize to Jurgen, to Billy (Hogan, club chief executive), to the players and to everyone who works so hard at LFC to make our fans proud. They have absolutely no responsibility for this disturbance. They were the most upset and dishonest. This is what hurts the most. They love your club and do everything they can to make you proud every day.
“I know that the entire LFC team has the expertise, leadership and passion it takes to restore trust and move us forward. When we signed up for the challenges associated with football over a decade ago, we dreamed of what you dreamed of. And we have worked hard to improve your club. Our work is not finished yet. And I hope you understand that even when we make mistakes, we try to work for the benefit of your club. I have abandoned you in this endeavor.
Again, I’m sorry, and I alone am responsible for the unnecessary negativity that has been brought out in recent days. It is something that I will not forget. And shows how much power the fans have today and rightly will continue to have.
“If there is one thing that this terrible pandemic has clearly shown, it is how crucial fans are to our sport and to every sport. It is displayed in every empty stadium. It has been an incredibly difficult year for all of us; hardly anyone untouched.
‘It is important that the Liverpool football family remains intact, vital and committed to what we have seen of you around the world, with local gestures of kindness and support. I can promise I will do what I can to promote that. ‘