Shankly's 40th anniversary

18.12.1999 - Coventry 2-0 - Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of Bill Shankly's arrival at Anfield. A mosaic across the top of the Kop spelt the word 'SHANKS'. Below were two images of Shanks' face flanking the Cross of St Andrew.

"Some of the great names from Liverpool's past 40 years were introduced to the fans, the two Scots pipers on the pitch played Shankly's favourite hymn, Amazing Grace. On The Kop the Kopites held up 12,000 coloured cards. Barely a minute into the hymn and the Kop began singing - slowly, and almost in hushed tones, "Shankly, Shankly". I swear it was one of the most moving things I've ever heard; the hairs stood up on the back of my neck. It was difficult to hold back the tears. The cards were then hurredly put aside and the massed flags and banners were unfurled. This was the loudest, most passionate YNWA that I've heard in years. It was twice as loud and twice as stirring as the CWC semi with PSG which many rate as The Kop's greatest hour since it was seated. From my position front and centre I could see the (truly) massive 'All Around The Ground The Kop Spirit Survives' banner being passed back up over hundreds of heads. It brought a lump to the throat. The anthem continued way past it's normal end point - it was if we didn't want it to end." - From Red All Over The Land.

Shanks quote

"The decades have drifted past, yet still I recall those Sunday afternoons when Nessie Shankly's kindly voice would come crackling down the line. "I'm sorry, Bill's not here," she would say. "He's over the park, playing football with the kids. When will he be back, you say? When he wins, of course." And you could hear the chuckle as she put down the telephone. Half-an-hour later the man himself would come on, a touch breathless, to tell of his part in the nine-goal thriller and of how he had laid on the winner, with the park-keeper tapping his watch and the mothers calling them in for their tea. And then Bill Shankly would talk football. And I, the rawest of rookies, would listen, scribble and revel in the tutorial.

The results of the scribblings would appear in a weekly magazine. A senior colleague, a trusted friend of Shankly, had approached him to write a column. Bill mulled it over for a moment and then, suddenly, he beamed. 'I'll do it, on one condition,' he said. 'I don't want any payment.' We waited for an explanation. 'I had to pay a lot of tax last year,' he said. 'Next year, when I see the tax man, he'll say: 'You reckon you've declared everything, Mr Shankly, but you haven't told us what you earned from this football column. So I reckon we've got you.' And I'll say: 'I never took a bloody penny for it, so who's got who, son? Eh?' And he cackled triumphantly, as we attempted to interpret the economics of his prank."

PATRICK COLLINS - Daily Mail reporter

This website is owned by LFChistory.net
BobPaisley.com
BillyLiddell.com