Hillsborough remembered

Justice for HillsboroughThis Saturday, April 15th, marks the 16th anniversary of the Hillsborough Stadium disaster, in which 96 football supporters lost their lives. To mark the anniversary, Liverpool great Kenny Dalglish, the football icon I and many others regard as Liverpool's finest ever player (I even live in his old house), has republished his memories and feelings about what happened that day, on Liverpoolfc.tv. It is a moving memoir that also presents a kind of truth about Liverpool as a city and a people. The fight for justice for those killed continues through the Hillsborough Justice Campaign. It was a cruel twist of fate for Hillsborough to happen only four years after the Heysel Stadium disaster, when 39 people, mostly Juventus fans from Italy, also lost their lives, although it is not appropriate to draw direct comparisons. In 1985, when Heysel happened, I was taking a year's hiatus to travel and get some work experience before going to college. In the summer following the events at Heysel on May 29th, I wound up in Genoa, the historic port-city on Italy's northwest coast. Despite the bad feeling towards English football fans and Liverpool fans, in particular, from all sections of society following Heysel, I remember spending lots of time in bars and cafes in Genoa and found the Italians I met to be fascinated in talking to me about what happened, even though I wasn't present at the stadium myself. At the time, cars with English plates were being trashed in parts of Italy and one or two locals seemed to think it would be a good idea if I stopped saying I was from Liverpool, for my own health. But I never had a problem over the course of a month in Italy. Maybe it would have been different if I'd been in Turin, Juventus' home town. Probably. Nearly 20 years later, Liverpool and Juventus were drawn together again in the 2005 Champions' League quarter finals. As Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry said: "The two clubs built bridges and forged powerful links after Heysel," also highlighting the "mutual respect" that has grown between the two clubs and supporters. The game at Anfield was conducted by players and supporters alike in this spirit.


One Response to “Hillsborough remembered”

  1. sacramed Says:

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