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The links between Liverpool and Newcastle United grow ever stronger

5 years ago

Now the lyrics may have been pilfered from messrs John Lennon and Paul McCartney –  but the link between Tyneside and Merseyside is a long-standing one.

It was twenty years ago today,

Sgt. Keegan taught the band to play

They’ve been going in and out of style

But they’re guaranteed to raise a smile

So may I introduce to you

The act you’ve known for all these years

Sgt. Rafa’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

We’re Sgt. Rafa’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

We hope you will enjoy the show,

We’re Sgt. Rafa’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

Sit back and let the evening go

We’re Sgt. Rafa’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

The personnel that have been at both Liverpool and Newcastle United have endured varying degrees of success, from recent players like Andy Carroll and Jose Enrique, to Michael Owen and Craig Bellamy, managed by Graeme Souness  and once upon a time John Barnes and Ian Rush managed by Kenny Dalglish.

The more successful ones that spring to my mind are the likes of Peter Beardsley, Barry Venison, Terry McDermott and of course, Kevin Keegan, as player and then manager.

Looking back yesterday (20 October), on the 20th Anniversary of the enthralling 5-0 victory over Man Utd, we had King Kevin in the dugout and Peter The Great pulling the strings on the pitch, the 5-0 on reflection shouldn’t have been that much of a shock.

That side was fantastic: Shearer and Sir Les up front, Rob Lee and David Ginola were running the show in team littered with creative gems. Fast forward to now and we have another man in the dugout with that Liverpool connection, Rafa Benitez, with another link from Liverpool in Jonjo Shelvey, orchestrating the side to fantastic things week in week out.

The similarities with Liverpool and Newcastle are there: both sets of fans love their football and both know what they want to see – honest hard working players, laced with enough creativity to keep them entertained.

Rafa has bought into this and understands that the reason a club is special is its public. He seemed keen to foster great relationships with the people of Liverpool in his time there and he’s doing much the same up here, on and off the field.

This week’s results up and down the land have seen us go top of the Championship, a position that we are now widely expected to make our own.

I’ve been as perplexed as anyone with the team selection and substitutes of Rafa Benitez but if he continues to get this side playing in the fashion they are, and in turn topping the table and making us feel happy about this club again (the scenes at Oakwell on Tuesday night certainly show that to be the case), then as that Liverpool anthem states, he’ll never walk alone with 52,000 Geordies backing him and his players to the hilt every week.

Keep on keeping on . .



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