Blog » The Merseyside Derby: 215 days of stress and counting...
I don’t know about you, but I fucking hate Derbies…
We build them up, we talk in excited terms, we think back to all those legendary wins, and chuckle at those countless weeks of earned bragging rights but in truth it’s all bollocks.
The build up is like a form of mass hypnosis. We breeze through our lives, swaddled in a warm, wondrous, glory-filled haze.; a magical, serene trance that lasts until an hour before kick-off, when the crushing reality smacks you in the face and your stomach fills your socks… “Hang on a minute… Who’s injured? Who’s Ref? Who’s commentating? What formation? Who’s marking Cahill at corners? What if we get beat? Oh shiiiit!”
All of a sudden the illusion is shattered, the veil is lifted and it all comes flooding back. Visions of tricky Russians and violent Scotsmen, Red cards, lost bets, dodgy penalty decisions and long thought forgotten names that read like impossible Countdown Conundrums; Kanchelskis, Radosavljevic, Danny-Fucking-Cadamarteri…
Yep, for every Gary Mac wonder goal, there’s Kvarme getting beasted. For every Godly touchline sniff there’s a meat-headed Scotsman scoring a debut header. For every Peter Bearsdley goal, there’s a Peter Bearsdsley goal.
Blessed are those amongst you who know no Blues, because whilst I loathe losing to the Mancs, or Chelski, or Arsenal or Harry Redknapp, at least they’re escapable. I mean sure, it means going cold turkey from Sky Sports News, threatening to spark that one questionable twat in work who supports them and ducking Facebook for a few days but it’s doable. But escaping the Evertonians after a derby day defeat? Fat fucking chance. You’ve got a better chance of escaping a pool party at Michael Barrymore’s house. They call it “bragging rights,” when really for the average Evertonian it’s “rub your smug, self-important, past-dwelling, Norwegian/welsh, red neck faces in it” rights.
When was the last time you enjoyed a derby from start to finish? Honestly think about it. If your answer is anything other than “never” I imagine you’ve either just put down your crack pipe or your name is Michael Owen.
Form goes out the window, refs throw out yellow cards like confetti, and wanky no marks cement themselves in Toffee folklore (are you reading this Dan Gosling?). The only respite we get is in the moments. Those spirit lifting, neck hair erecting, goose bump raising moments of heavenly levity that remind us why we pour in our hearts and souls, empty our wallets and risk utter humiliation at the alter of footballing fate each and every time our boys in red take the field. Despite the potential week-ruining pitfalls we do remain fortunate. Fortunate that for every Franny Jeffers, there’s a Robbie Fowler, for every Duncan Ferguson there’s an Ian Rush and for every Tim Cahill there’s a Phil Neville…
No, as another Derby approaches it is not kick-off I await with back sweating, arse twitching trepidation, but rather the full time whistle. That telling culmination of skill, luck and fate when, fingers crossed, by hook or by crook, our moments outweigh theirs.
I don’t know about you, but I fucking hate Derbies…. Brilliant aren’t they? ;)
The Redmen TV
Our Full Preview of the 216th Merseyside Derby featuring Sketches from Darren Farley: