Saturday, July 12, 2008

'43 Years With The Same Bird' Extract

Last week I gave an insight into this new book which is about to hit the stores near you. Now exclusive to all Red Cauldron readers, is the extract from the book. And guess what, it's on the meeting with none other than Mr. Bill Shankly!

And here it is:

Bill Shankly's bare manhood stood three feet away from me. OK, stood is an exaggeration. We were getting on well, but not that well.

Slacks with a crease that could shave a werewolf's four-day shadow had been removed and placed on a dressing-room hook with his left hand. In his right was a pair of crumpled shorts so old you could smell the Boot Room on them. Then a question: "What school are you from again, son?"

"De La Salle."

And the shorts, which had made their way to the expectant toes of his left foot, were abruptly pulled away.

"A rugby school?"

"No. Football."

Relief. Then animation.

"Thank Christ for that. I hate rugby. I remember turning up at a new Air Force post inWales and asking for a football. This officer says to me 'We don't play football here, only rugby.' So I says right, give me a rugby ball and I'll squeeze it intee a fitball."

He burst into a raucous laugh and began to squeeze an imaginary oval ball into around shape. "Christ, it's funny what things come back to you. I'd forgotten all about that."

Let's get this straight. I'm joshing away with Bill Shankly at Melwood training ground like a groom and best man before a stag night.

I've been in his company only five minutes and he's already told me a story nobody has ever heard before. Granted, in the league table of Shankly anecdotes it's six points behind Stenhousemuir. But it's mine to drop casually into conversations for eternity.

As this dawns on me a shiver jolts the blood.

There's a sigh I have to emit in short bursts for fear of being sucked inside out. Fear drifts from my brain, spreading down to feet doing epileptic taps. It's a feeling I would experience over the next 30 years of professional life before doing an interview.

But I would never feel the pure rush of pride I felt that June morning, knowing that whatever miserable hand life might deal, my self-esteem would never scrape a barrel's bottom. I would always be able to look a boss, a foe or a put-down merchant in the eye and tell them that Bill Shankly once shared a unique anecdote with me.

With his pride and joy dangling in my eye-line. At 17, life could only go downhill. PS: Huge. Obviously.

Want to read more? The appetite wetting extract here is just part of an even larger collection of stories from a Liverpool fanatic, Brian Reade. Want to find out more or already all set to get this book? Click HERE for more!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Hello & Goodbye

If you thought this is a post about me, then sorry to disappoint you! I'm going nowhere but there seemed to be much activity going on around Melwood in recent days as players arrive and depart from the Liverpool training ground.

Rafa is well please to announce the arrivals of 3 players who are going to fill the ranks of the Liverpool first team next season. Philip Degan, Andrea Dosenna and Diego Cavalieri are unveiled and though they are not ground-breaking signings like Fernando Torres, let's hope that they will have a glorious career at the Reds, aiding us to the long-awaited Premiership crown.

Going the other way is none other than '2 meter Peter', who has been a cult favourite for the past 3 years. His move to Liverpool sparked a revival in his career with participation in the 2006 World Cup and also Champions League final last season.

It is sad to see him leave Liverpool obviously, knowing that he has the qualities of a good player and you have to take your hats off for him as he, against all odds, proved himself to be a top player with important and spectacular goals.

His contributions to the Reds should not be underestimated and I shall wish him all the best in the south coast (just don't score against us next season, that is).

Meanwhile, Harry Kewell has finally departed. Phew