What's Your New Season Resolution?

Liverpool fan Paul Little grew up hating Manchester United, but he has resolved not to do so anymore. What new season resolution have you made...?

Last Updated: 20/08/13 at 14:41 Post Comment

Latest Articles

Arsenal Stroll Up Quality Street...

Post comment

'The magic of the FA Cup' roughly translates as 'the better side plays a bit sh*t'. That didn't happen at Wembley, where an incredible Arsenal side played incredibly...

Football People On TV: Gordon Strachan

Post comment

Chippy arse? Aye...do you want some? Wee Gordie is never anything other than entertaining, even if he is wearing adult man¿s shorts as trousers. Especially so....

All Articles

The New Year spawns many a New Year's resolution. I propose that the new season do likewise. So, what's your new season's resolution? Let me tell you mine.

This season, I'm going to attempt something that goes against my very DNA as a Liverpool supporter, something I should have done when the face of football changed ten seasons ago with the arrival of Roman Abramovich into the English game. I'm going to try and take an enlightened view on Manchester United, the Red Devils to its fans, for too long the Great Satan to me.

Growing up in suburban Dublin in the 1970s and 1980s, kids for the most part supported either Liverpool or United. And despite the fact that United were at times largely irrelevant as serious on-field rivals to Liverpool in that period, their fans in my school and on my road kept the Manchester side front and centre in my mind as Liverpool's great enemies. No matter how well Liverpool did, United, I was assured, were better. Every league or cup win over the Merseymen was rammed down my gob, every United trophy treated as if it were the European Cup itself.

I've carried my schoolyard dislike of United right through my adult years, sharpening with every title win as Liverpool declined into soap opera and pantomime. I would have carried it into this season too had I not had a road to Damascus type moment over the summer when considering where Liverpool are right now, where they want to go and what they need to do to get there.

Clearly, it's imperative that Liverpool get back into the Champions League. Being there will help the club grow on an off the pitch and compete at the top table on a consistent basis. It could, allied with Liverpool's global reach and brand potential, be the platform for knocking United off their bloody perch! (A man can dream can't he?) By the same token, failure to qualify time and again is seeing the club's legendary status gradually leach away. Top four is a priority.

The time has come to recalibrate and refocus as a Liverpool fan. Yes, Manchester United present a barrier to entry as they more or less own one of the four coveted spots. But critically - and here was my epiphany - United are there on merit, by virtue of the many great decisions made in growing that club in the last 25 odd years.

Manchester United are what my club should aspire to be. Looking at FSG's plans for Liverpool, you get the impression they are thinking on similar lines. If Liverpool are to get back to the top of the tree, it will be by making great decisions on and off the pitch and using the club's own resources to get there. And that is how it should be.

Yes, United are a rival - but they are not the enemy. They are the role model. Liverpool's enemies are Chelsea and Manchester City, two traditionally flaky and middling clubs who have grown to positions of prominence in the English and European games as a result of the riches bestowed on them by their owners. Neither club could have hoped to reach such lofty heights under their own steam. The owners of both clubs have skewed and subverted the game in England. If neither club had won the lottery, so to speak, then by the historic order of the English game, Liverpool would consistently make the top four and would accordingly be growing more powerful.

By their very existence, City and Chelsea hold Liverpool back. Their riches guarantee that one or usually both take up critical Champions League spots. I see little value in their achievements on the pitch since both were given billionaire backing, little romance or inspiration in either club's story. On balance, I would prefer Liverpool - no matter how long it took - to try and grow from their own resources as United did, than be bought by a billionaire and be catapulted back to the top.

So enough is enough! This season, I'll no longer be childishly cheering either side on in the hope that they stop United adding another title to the trophy cabinet. If United do so, then good luck to them - Liverpool should watch and learn. Struggles for Chelsea and City would be much more deserving of celebration. This doesn't mean I'll be supporting United and greeting every victory - just that I'll try to be more philosophical about what it means.

Like my New Year's resolutions, I'll probably cave within a few months. But in principle, the pledge is sound.

So tell me, what's your new season's resolution going to be?

Paul Little - follow him on Twitter

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

ang on there!! We've only just won the second in a row. Don't we have to win three, like Brazil, to get to keep the Cup permanently at our stadium? ;-)

gutbukkit
Emirates to sponsor FA Cup

T

ypical Bodgers, in desperate need of a defensive midfielder and go for a floaty number 10 type midfielder. BODGERS OUT.

uncle monty
The Home Gossip

B

enteke is an absolute steal for £32.5m, he would get into any team in the world (except Barcelona) at the moment. I've seen many very good strikers in my 30+ years as a Villa fan. This guy is the best without question.

sparkigol
Benteke's £32.5m release clause

Latest Photos

Footer 365

PSG win French Cup to seal the domestic quadruple

Paris Saint-Germain achieved a unique domestic quadruple when they beat Ligue 2 side AJ Auxerre 1-0 in the French Cup final.

Athletic Bilbao 1-3 Barcelona: Lionel Messi double hands Barca Copa del Rey triumph

Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona moved a step closer to the treble with a 3-1 win over Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Rey final.

Theo Walcott says Arsenal's squad is strong enough to mount a Premier League title bid next term

Theo Walcott thinks the current Arsenal squad is the strongest he has been involved with.

Mail Box

Players Must Stand Up For Qatar Boycott

Players, not bureaucrats, hold the key to boycotting Qatar. Also in the afternoon mailbox: Wenger is right to rotate, Zlatan can dribble, and it's Barca v Ajax in the budget final...

What Would You Do If You Were Blatter?

Step into Sepp's shoes, is the invitation from one mailboxer. Also: United already have their new number one, Rodgers deserves time, and the best Budget XI so far...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company