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Liverpool Football Club is a professional football club based in Liverpool, England which plays in the Premier League and is one of the most successful in the history of English football, winning more trophies than any other English club. Liverpool has won a joint-record eighteen league titles, seven FA Cups, seven League Cups, three UEFA Cups and five European Cups, an English record.
The club was founded in 1892 and won five league championships between 1900 and 1947. However, Liverpool spent several years in the Second Division during the late 1950s, and did not win promotion again until the appointment of Bill Shankly as manager in 1959. The club traditionally played in red and white, but this was changed to all red in the 1960s.
Under Shankly's management, Liverpool won three League Championship titles, two FA Cups and a UEFA Cup, the club's first European trophy. In the past 30 years, they have been one of the most successful clubs in English and European football; they won four European Cups between 1977 and 1984 and a fifth in 2005.
The Heysel Stadium disaster made the club infamous in Europe; 39 Juventus fans died after a wall collapsed as they fled from charging Liverpool fans. The club was involved in a worse disaster four years later-the Hillsborough Disaster- which saw the death of 96 Liverpool fans in a crush against perimeter fencing. Both disasters have had wide-ranging impacts on English and European football, and the club, to this day.
Liverpool F.C. was founded after a multi-faceted dispute between the Everton Committee and John Houlding, the owner of the land at Anfield and Everton's president. Everton F.C. founded and played at Anfield from 1884 to 1892. The catalyst that escalated the dispute was when the adjacent landowner wanted to run a road though the newly built main stand. Fundamental difference emerged in how the club should be run when the club assessed the purchase of the whole of the Anfield site. Houlding was accused of motives for personal financial gain. Everton who had been playing at Anfield for eight years d 636f55g eparted from Houlding and Anfield moving to a new stadium in Goodison Park.
Liverpool F.C. were founded by Houlding to play at the vacated Anfield. The original name was to be Everton F.C. and Athletic Grounds, Ltd., or Everton Athletic for short, but it was changed to Liverpool F.C. in June 1892 when The Football Association refused to recognise the team as Everton.
The club won the Lancashire League in their first season, and successfully applied to join the Second Division for the following season. They won the league and were promoted to the First Division. They won their first title in 1900-01, and were champions again in 1905-06. They reached their first FA Cup final in 1914 but lost 1-0 to Burnley. The club won back-to-back championships in 1921-22 and 1922-23, but after this the club did not win another trophy until 1946-47 when they won the League for a fifth time. The club reached the FA Cup final in 1950, but lost to Arsenal. Liverpool were relegated to the Second Division in the1953-
54 season. During this period they suffered a 2-1 Fa Cup defeat against non-league Worcester City FC in the 1958-59 season.
Not long after this infamous result, Bill Shankly was appointed manager and released 24 players. He also converted a room at Anfield originally used for boot storage into a room where the coaches could talk strategy over tea (and other beverages). There Shankly, along with other founding Boot Room members Joe Fagan, Reuben Bennett, and Bob Paisley, started reshaping the team.
Promotion to the First Division was achieved in 1961-62, and the club won the League for the first time in 17 years in 1963-64. Another League title followed in 1965-66, after the club had won their first FA Cup the previous season. The club won the League and UEFA Cup in 1972-73 and the FA Cup again a year later; after this, Shankly retired and was replaced by assistant Bob Paisley. Paisley was even more successful than Shankly and the club won the League and UEFA Cup in 1975-76, his second season as manager. The following season they retained the League title, won the European Cup for the first time, but lost in the FA Cup final, narrowly missing out on a treble. Liverpool retained the European Cup the next season, and the season after won the League again with 68 points-a domestic record, conceding only 16 goals in 42 league matches. During the nine seasons Paisley managed the club, Liverpool won 21 trophies, including three European Cups, a UEFA Cup, six league titles and three consecutive League Cups. The only domestic trophy to elude him was the FA Cup.
Paisley retired in 1983 and (as Shankly had done) handed the reins to a Boot Room veteran, assistant coach Joe Fagan. Liverpool won three trophies in Fagan's first season in charge: the League, League Cup and European Cup, becoming the first English side to win three trophies in a
season. Liverpool reached the European Cup final again in 1985. The match was against Juventus at the Heysel Stadium. Before kick-off, disaster struck: Liverpool fans breached a fence which separated the two groups of supporters and charged the Juventus fans. The resulting weight of people caused a retaining wall to collapse, killing 39 fans, mostly Italians. The match was played regardless and Liverpool lost 1-0 to Juventus. English clubs were consequently banned from participating in European competition for five years; Liverpool received a ten-year ban, which was later reduced to six years. Fourteen of their fans received convictions for involuntary manslaughter. Fagan resigned after the disaster and Kenny Dalglish was appointed as player-manager. During his reign, the club won another three League Championships and two FA Cups, including a League and Cup 'Double' in 1985-86. Liverpool's success was overshadowed by the Hillsborough Disaster: in an FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest on 15 April 1989, hundreds of Liverpool fans were crushed. 94 fans died that day; the 95th victim died in hospital from his injuries four days later, and the 96th died nearly four years later without regaining consciousness. After the Hillsborough tragedy there was a governmental review of stadium safety. Known as the Taylor Report, it paved the way for legislation which required top-division teams to have all-seater stadiums. The report ruled that the main reason for the disaster was overcrowding due to a failure of police control. 1989 also saw Liverpool involved in the most dramatic conclusion to a season of all time, with the club losing the title on goals scored and in the last minute of the season in a home defeat to eventual winners Arsenal. Dalglish cited the Hillsborough Disaster and its repercussions as the reason for his resignation in 1991. He was replaced by former player Graeme Souness. Apart from winning the FA Cup in 1992, Souness achieved little success and was replaced by a former
member of the 'Boot Room', Roy Evans. Evans fared little better: a League Cup victory in 1995 was his only trophy. One highlight was a 4-3 victory over Newcastle United at Anfield on 3 April 1996, which was named in April 2003 as the Match of the Decade in the Premier League 10 Seasons Awards. Gérard Houllier was appointed as co-manager in 1998-99, but was left in sole charge after Evans resigned in November 1998.
In his second season in charge Liverpool won a treble of the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup. In the 2001-02 season, during which Houllier underwent major heart surgery, Liverpool finished second behindArsenal. The following seasons failed to live up to expectations and Houllier was replaced by Rafael Benítez. The club finished fifth in his first season in charge but won the UEFA Champions League by beatingMilan 3-2 in a penalty shootout after the match finished 3-3. The following season Liverpool finished third with 82 points-their highest total since 1988. They won the FA Cup as they had the Champions League victory the previous season, by beating West Ham United in penalty shootout after the match finished at 3-3. In 2006-07, the club's search for investment came to an end when American businessmen George Gillett and Tom Hicks became the owners of Liverpool in a deal which valued the club and its outstanding debts at £218.9 million. That season, the club reached another Champions League final, but this time they lost 2-1 to AC Milan. In the 2008-09 season Liverpool achieved their highest Premier League points total of 86 points and finished as runners up to Manchester United.
Colours and crest
Liverpool traditionally played in red and white, but this was changed to an all red kit in the mid 1960s. Red has not always been used. In the early days, when the club took over Anfield from Everton, they used the Toffees' colours of blue and white. Their kit was almost identical to that worn by the Everton team of the time. By 1894 Liverpool had chosen red, and in 1901 the city's liver bird was adopted as the club's badge. For the next 60 years Liverpool's kit was red shirts with white shorts. The socks were changed over the years from red, to black, to white, and back to red again.
In 1964, then-Liverpool manager Bill Shankly decided to send the team out in all red for the first time against Anderlecht, as Ian St. John recalled in his autobiography:
Liverpool's away colours are traditionally either white shirts and black shorts or all yellow. However, in 1987 an all grey kit was introduced, which was used until the centenary season of 1991-92, when it was replaced by a combination of green shirts and white shorts. After various colour combinations in the 1990s, including gold and navy, bright yellow, black and grey, and ecru, the club alternated between yellow and white away kits until the 2008-09 season, when they re-introduced the grey kit. The current kits are designed by Adidas, who made the club's kits between 1985 and 1996. The only other branded shirts worn by the club were made by Umbro until 1985 and Reebok for ten seasons starting in 1996. A third kit, consisting of a turquoise top and black shorts, has been designed primarily for Champions League away games, but is used for any domestic games where both red and grey would clash.
Liverpool was the first British professional club to have a sponsor's logo on their shirts, after they agreed to a deal with Hitachi in 1979. Since
then they have been sponsored by Crown Paints, Candy, Carlsberg and soon to be Standard Chartered Bank. The contract with Carlsberg, which was signed in 1992, was the longest agreement in English top-flight football.
Liverpool have confirmed that sponsor Carlsberg will be replaced with Standard Chartered Bank at the start of the 2010-11 season, ending a 17-year association with Carlsberg.
The Liverpool badge is based around the city's liver bird, which is placed inside a shield. Above the shield is a representation of the Shankly Gates with the title of club's famous anthem, 'You'll Never Walk Alone'. The twin flames at either side are symbolic of the Hillsborough memorial outside Anfield, where an eternal flame burns in memory of those who died in the disaste.
Cap.2 Current squad and Managers
The following players have won the UEFA Club Footballer of the Year award whilst playing for Liverpool:
§ Steven Gerrard - 2005
Cap. 3 Prefered football player
Fernando José Torres Sanz
Born in Fuenlabrada, Community of Madrid, Torres became interested in football as a child and joined his first team, Parque 84, at the age of five. His father José worked during Torres' childhood, and his mother Flori traveled daily with him to training sessions. His grandfather was not a passionate football fan, but took pride in being an Atlético Madrid supporter, and Torres inherited the love for the club.
Torres started playing football as a goalkeeper, the position his brother played in. When he was seven years old, however, he started playing regularly as a striker in an indoor league for the neighborhood club, Mario's Holland, using the characters from the anime Captain Tsubasa as inspiration. Three years later, aged 10, he progressed to an 11-side team, Rayo 13. He scored 55 goals in a season and was one of three Rayo 13 players to earn a trial with Atlético Madrid. He impressed the scouts and joined the club in 1995.
He is a Spanish footballer who plays for Premier League club Liverpool and the Spanish national team as a striker.
Torres started his career with Atlético Madrid, progressing through their youth ranks. He made his professional debut in 2001 and finished his career with the club having scored 75 goals in 174 La Liga appearances, earning the nickname El Niño ('The Kid'). Prior to his La Liga debut, Torres played two seasons in the Segunda División, making 40 appearances and scoring seven goals. He joined Liverpool in 2007, after signing for a club record transfer fee. He marked his first season at Anfield by being Liverpool's first player, since Robbie Fowler in 1995-96, to score more than
20 league goals in a season. Torres become the fastest player in Liverpool history to score 50 league goals after scoring against Aston Villa in December 2009.
He is also a Spanish international and made his debut for the country against Portugal in 2003. He has since participated in three major tournaments, UEFA Euro 2004, 2006 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2008. He did not score a goal at Euro 2004, but he scored three at World Cup 2006. Torres scored the winning goal for Spain in their 1-0 win over Germany in the UEFA Euro 2008 Final. Torres made his competitive debut for Liverpool against Aston Villa in a 2-1 win on 11 August 2007. He made his first appearance in the UEFA Champions League four days later in a 1-0 victory over Toulouse, after coming on as a 79th minute substitute. His first Premier League goal came on his Anfield debut on 19 August, in the 16th minute in a 1-1 draw againstChelsea. His first hat-trick came in a 4-2 victory over Reading in the League Cup in September, with all of his goals coming in the second half. His first goals in the Champions League came on his third appearance in the competition as Liverpool beat Porto 4-1, as he scored twice.
He was named Premier League Player of the Month for February, during which he scored four goals in two league appearances, including a hat-trick against Middlesbrough on 23 February 2008. This hat-trick and another in a 4-0 victory over West Ham United on 5 March 2008 meant he became the first Liverpool player since Jack Balmer in November 1946 to score a hat-trick in successive home matches. Later in March, after he scored a 47th minute header against Reading at Anfield, becoming the first Liverpool player since Robbie Fowler in the 1995-96 season campaign to score 20 league goals in a season. In April, he scored another Champions League goal, this time against Arsenal in the quarter-final
second leg, as Liverpool advanced to the semi-final. This goal took him onto 29 goals for the 2007-08 season in all competitions, eclipsing Liverpool
favourite Michael Owen's personal record for goals in a season. On 11 April 2008, it was announced Torres had made a six man shortlist for the PFA Players' Player of the Year award, which was eventually won byCristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United. The Spanish international was also nominated for the PFA Young Player of the Year Award, which was won by Cesc Fàbregas of Arsenal and was named in the PFA Team of the Year. In May, he finished second to Ronaldo for the FWA Footballer of the Year award.
On 4 May 2008, Torres scored a 57th minute winner against Manchester City, which equalled the consecutive Anfield league goal record of eight games set by Roger Hunt. After scoring his 24th league goal in the final game of the season, a 2-0 win against Tottenham Hotspur, he set a new record for the most prolific foreign goal scorer ever in a debut season in England, eclipsing Ruud van Nistelrooy's 23 goals. He ended the season in joint second place with Emmanuel Adebayor in the race for the Premier League golden boot. Torres was subject to media speculation that Chelsea were willing pay £50 million to sign him but Torres responded by saying it would be 'many years' before he left Liverpool. Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks also negated the idea of a transfer, saying he would not allow Torres to leave the club at any price.
Reserves and Academy squad
Opened in 1884, Anfield was originally owned by a Mr. Orrell, a fellow brewer and friend of John Houlding, president of Everton FC. Everton, who previously played at Priory Road, were in need of a new venue, due to the noise produced from the crowd on match-days. Orrell let the land to the club for a donation to the local hospital. Everton's landlord changed when John Houlding purchased the land from Orrell in 1885 charging direct rent.
The first match played at Anfield was between Everton and Earlestown on 28 September 1884, which Everton won 5-0. During Everton's tenure at the stadium, stands were erected for some of the 8,000 plus spectators regularly attending matches, although the ground was capable of holding around 20,000 spectators and occasionally did. The ground was considered of international standard at the time, playing host to England versus Ireland in 1889. Anfield's first league match was played on 8 September 1888, between Everton and Accrington Everton quickly improved as a team and three years later in the 1890-91 season became Anfield's first league champions.
A dispute emerged between Houlding and the Everton FC committee, over how the club was to be owned and run. This dispute escalated from the full purchase of the land at Anfield from minor land owner John Orrell, into a disagreement over how the club was run. This culminated with Everton moving to Goodison Park. Houlding was left with an empty stadium, and decided to form a new club to occupy it. The team was called Liverpool F.C and Athletic Grounds Ltd, and their first match at Anfield was a friendly played in front of 200 people on 1 September 1892, against Rotherham Town, which they won 7-1.
Liverpool's first Lancashire League match at Anfield was played on 9 September 1893, against Lincoln City, Liverpool won 4-0 in front of 5,000 spectators. A new stand was constructed in 1895, capable of holding 3,000 spectators, on the site of the present Main Stand. The stand had a distinctive red and white gable, and was similar to the main stand at Newcastle United's ground St James' Park. Another stand was constructed at the Anfield Road end in 1903, built from timber and corrugated iron. After Liverpool had won their second League championship in 1906, a new stand was built along the Walton Breck Road. Localjournalist Ernest Edwards, who was the sports editor of newspapers the Liverpool Daily Post and Echo, christened it the Spion Kop; it was named after a famous hill in South Africa where a local regiment had suffered heavy losses during the Boer War in 1900. More than 300 men had died, many of them from Liverpool, as the British army attempted to capture the strategic hilltop. Around the same period a stand was also built along Kemlyn Road.
The ground remained much the same until 1928 when the Kop was redesigned and extended to hold 30,000 spectators, all standing, with a roof erected as well. Many stadia in England had stands named after the Spion Kop, however Anfield's was the largest Kop in the country at the time. It was able to hold more supporters than some entire football grounds. The topmast of the SS Great Eastern, one of the first iron ships, was rescued from the ship breaking yard at nearby Rock Ferry, and was hauled up the Everton Valley by a team of horses to be erected alongside the new Kop where it still stands today, serving as a flag pole.
Floodlights were installed and on 30 October 1957, they were switched on for the first time for a match against Everton, to commemorate the 75-year anniversary of theLiverpool County Football Association. In
1963 the old Kemlyn Road stand was replaced by a cantilevered stand, able to hold 6,700 spectators and built at a cost of £350,000. Two years later alterations were made at the Anfield Road end, turning it into a large covered standing area. The biggest redevelopment came in 1973, when the old Main Stand was demolished and a new one was constructed. At the same time, the pylon floodlights were pulled down and new lights installed along the top of the Kemlyn Road and Main Stands. The new stand was officially opened on 10 March 1973, by the Duke of Kent. In the 1980s the paddock in front of the Main Stand was turned into seating, and in 1982 seats were introduced at the Anfield Road end. The Shankly Gates were erected in 1982, a tribute to former manager Bill Shankly; Shankly's widow Nessie unlocked them for the first time on 26 August 1982. Across the Shankly Gates are the words You'll Never Walk Alone, from the Gerry & The Pacemakers' hit song that Liverpool fans adopted as the club's anthem.
Coloured seats and a police-room were added to the Kemlyn Road stand in 1987. After the Hillsborough disaster in 1989, the Taylor Report recommended that all grounds in the country should be converted into all-seater grounds by May 1994. A second tier was added to the Kemlyn Road stand in 1992, turning it into a double decker layout. It included executive boxes and function suites as well as 11,000 seating spaces. Plans to expand the stand had been made earlier, with the club buying up houses on Kemlyn Road during the 1970s and 1980s. Plans were put on hold until 1990 because two sisters, Joan and Nora Mason, refused to sell their house. When the club reached an agreement with the sisters in 1990, the expansion plans were put into action. The stand was officially opened on 1 September 1992, by UEFA president Lennart Johansson and re-named the Centenary Stand. The Kop was rebuilt in 1994 after the recommendations of the Taylor Report and became all seated; although it is still a single tier, the capacity was significantly reduced to 12,390.
On 4 December 1997, a statue of Bill Shankly, created from bronze, was unveiled at the visitors' centre in front of the Kop. Standing at over 8 feet (2.4 m) tall, the statue depicts Shankly wearing a fan's scarf around his neck, in a familiar pose he adopted when receiving applause from fans. Inscribed on the statue are the words: 'Bill Shankly - He Made the People Happy'. The Hillsborough memorial is situated alongside the Shankly Gates, and is always decorated with flowers and tributes to the 96 people who died as a result of the disaster. At the centre of the memorial is an eternal flame, signifying that those who died will never be forgotten. The most recent change to Anfield came in 1998 when the new two-tier Anfield Road end was opened. The stand has however encountered a number of problems since its redevelopment. At the beginning of the 1999-2000 season a series of support poles and stanchions had to be brought in to give extra stability to the top tier of the stand. During Ronnie Moran's testimonial against Celtic many fans complained of movement of the top tier. At the same time that the stanchions were inserted the executive seating area was expanded by two rows in the main stand, lowering the capacity for seating in the paddock.
Structures and facilities
The pitch is surrounded by four all-seater stands, the Anfield Road end, the Centenary Stand, the Kop and the Main Stand, all of which are covered. The Anfield Road end and Centenary Stand are two-tiered, while the Kop and Main Stand are single-tiered. Entry to the stadium is gained by radio-frequency identification (RFID) smart cards rather than the traditional manned turnstile. This system, used in all 80 turnstiles around Anfield, was introduced in 2005.
The Centenary Stand was originally named the Kemlyn Road stand before the addition of a second tier. After the expansion was complete, the
stand was renamed to mark the club's hundredth anniversary. The capacity of the stand is 11,762, with 4,600 spaces on the upper tier and 6,814 on the lower tier, while 348 spaces are also available in the executive boxes within the stand. The Anfield Road stand is used to house the away fans during matches. Originally a simple single-tier stand with multi-coloured seats, a second tier has been added to the original stand, increasing the capacity to 9,074, consisting of 2,654 spaces on the upper tier, 6,391 on the lower tier and 29 spaces for disabled persons.
The Kop was originally built as an uncovered terrace capable of holding 30,000 spectators, although a roof was added in 1928. However, following the Hillsborough disaster and the subsequent Taylor Report, a new all-seater Kop was constructed with a capacity of 12,409, with nine disabled spaces. It is currently the largest single tier stand in Europe. The Main Stand houses the director's box and the player'sdressing rooms. The capacity of the stand is 12,277 seats consisting of 9,597 main stand seats, 2,409 available in the paddock, 177 in the directors box, 54 for the press box, and 40 disabled spaces.
There are 32 total spaces available to accommodate wheelchair users; 22 spaces are available for general sale, eight spaces are allocated to the away supporters, and another two spaces are kept unused for emergency circumstances. There are 36 spaces available for the visually impaired, which are situated in the paddock area of the Main Stand, with space for one personal assistant. A headset with fullcommentary is also provided.
Liverpool has won the English League Championship eighteen times (a record they share with Manchester United), the FA Cup seven times and the League Cup a record seven times. The club achieved a League and FA Cup 'Double' in 1986, and has won the League and European Cup double twice, in 1977 and 1984. They also won the League Cup in 1984 to complete a unique treble, a feat they repeated (albeit with different trophies) in 2001 when they won the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup. Liverpool has won the European Cup, Europe's primary club competition, five times, which is an English record. Only Real Madrid and Milan has won the competition on more occasions. The club's fifth triumph meant that they won the trophy outright and was awarded a multiple-winner badge. The club has won the UEFA Cup, Europe's secondary club competition, three times, a record they share with Juventus and Internazionale.
Liverpool is one of the best known football clubs from Europe. And one of the most successful clubs in the history of English football. Through all time great football players from the world played for this club. Today the team gathers some of the best football players from all over the world.