Adam Zand took some time to answer our questions for his My Liverpool Story.
- Where are you originally from?
Born in Boston. At age 10, I moved with my mother and stepfather to a small town, Spurstow, near Chester in Cheshire, England about a 40-minute drive (or train and shuttle) to Liverpool. If you had told me back then that Liverpool FC and Boston Red Sox would shareowners (and supporters), I would have questioned your sanity.
- How, when, and why did you become a Liverpool fan?
I joke (but, am I joking?) that I had no interest in following my “evil” stepfather’s team, Manchester United. One of his co-workers brought me a signed team ball from Stoke City, but I wasn’t feeling either of them. Early during that first summer, I was at a sports shop in Nantwich buying a Subbuteo set (look it up, kids – especially the ones where you can swerve the plastic players with ease). I saw a black and white poster of Kevin Keegan scoring against Newcastle in the previous season’s FA Cup Final. The shopkeeper gave me the poster, at least one Subbuteo team wearing all red, and the rest is history/herstory.
- Who’s your all-time favorite Liverpool player, and why?
Isn’t that like asking who your favorite child is?! I only have one son, so that’s an easier choice.
Gosh, as I type – and moving off the Keegan “first love” connection – I’m going with Steven Gerrard. A Liverpool legend from career start-to-finish. It is the determination to win and always play his best that gets my pick. I think he willed the team to win in Istanbul (maybe even during a half time lecture?), but also earlier vs. Olympiakos (“Ohhhhhh ya beauty”), Napoli in Europa, and then again vs. West Ham in that amazing Cup final (equalized and he scored in penalties, obviously).
Again, it was the game-to-game determination and passion (even that crazy substitute red card vs. United) that you have to respect and admire. He deserved a Premier League title, but so do a lot of people who excelled in the sport. That trophy and any missteps mean nothing in his career pantheon to me. Heck, I’m not so sure he won’t capture that silverware as a manager some day.
“He’s big and he’s F*ckin’ Hard, Steve Gerrard, Gerrard!”
- Where do you watch Liverpool games?
I have gathered with family, friends, footie supporters, my girlfriend, besties Jeff Cutler, GregPC and DKay, and even dates (in the past) in Cambridge, Massachusetts at The Phoenix Landing. Home of LFC Boston since 2006, our official supporters club, and a great place for football, food, drinks, laughs, and singing.
During this pandemic, a few shoutouts to “road” pubs I miss and have loved for matches: Smaltimore (in Baltimore), Penny Lane Pub (Richmond), HOME, A Bar (Portland), Finn McCool’s Irish Pub (New Orleans), 11th St. Bar (NYC), The Queen Vic (D.C.), and even Wolff’s Biergarten (Syracuse), where I saw that bastard Ramos end Mohamed Salah’s first Champions League dream.
- What was your most memorable Liverpool game, and why?
In-person, easy – I was with my stepfather at the famous Liverpool vs. St. Etienne 1977 European Cup quarterfinal, when the crowd was deafening almost throughout – and Super Sub David Fairclough won the match. My only regret is that I didn’t exchange scarves with a St. Etienne supporter, seated behind us, who asked me after the whistle.
- What is your all-time favorite goal for the Reds?
“Corner taken quickly, Origi!!!” is the obvious, but I’m going to mix it up to one earlier in that quest to conquer all of Europe again. The team was playing well in the League, but a trip to Bayern Munich seemed like a tough early draw. Sadio Mane controlling a long ball from Virgil, and dribbling around Neuer (best goalie of our time?) and a deft touch to the far post gave me joy and absolute belief that this team had European-winning pedigree (especially when he scored LFC’s third that match).
Favorite goal of this season: Salah killing off United, and Alisson Becker being the first one down the pitch to celebrate.
- Have you ever traveled to Liverpool?
A few memories to share:
First time there, a steward saw how intense or maybe worried my stepdad and I looked at the front of The Kop, and he took us over to a “children’s paddock” area. I remember Keegan doing a Cruyff stepover on the touchline. First time with my son, we were welcomed by the family of late, great Marty Collins. His dad and uncle gave exchanged tickets with that day so we could have better seats. My last time time, again with my son, in 2016 saw a 2-2 draw with a to-be-relegated Newcastle. Of note, Kevin Treanor, an owner of the Phoenix Landing, got us tickets apparently at below face value on late notice. He will never walk alone. Cheers, mate!
- Have you seen Liverpool play in the States?
I was at the match in Connecticut, 2004. I think that may have been the last (or next to last) match for Michael Owen, but I also remember thinking new guy Cisse looked really good. I was at all three Fenway Park matches with my son. Favorite memories were “parading” up Beacon St. with LFC Boston and some reporters. Fav moment from the last tour may have been Jamie Webster at The House of Blues, the night before doing the Pogues/Virgil Van Dijk song.
- How did you find out about American Scouser?
Jurgen Klopp told me it was boss tha. 😉
- Who’s your favorite present-day Liverpool player, and why?
Mohamed Salah brings extra joy to my life. I love his story of redemption from Chelsea exile (with a different hair cut and gaffer), but later scoring that goal against them with the yoga celebration; carrying Egypt to the World Cup; the tears in that first Champions League Final but more redemption with Never Give Up motivation vs. Barcelona; and all the goals, so many goals. I love his smile, his social media feed, religious spirituality, and this certain fatherhood celebration.
- What’s your go-to source for Liverpool news?
I like the groups on Facebook (including LFC America of course). Ok, so the discussions can get a bit heated – we all love Liverpool after all – but they are a great way to get articles, match reactions, share supporter stories and our history.
- How are you holding up during COVID-19?
I’ve been reading the Men In Blazers newsletter (almost every day), going to LFC Facebook groups, watching an occasional LFC match on NBCSN, and I really had a blast during Trent’s run to the final of the ePremier FIFA invitation. I’ve also been thinking about what a return would look like – at my pub or more importantly, at the actual matches – and if that will happen. Hard to believe LFC are six points from a thirty year-old wait – we can wait a bit longer. I just want us to stay healthy as we walk through a storm.
- What do you do when you’re not cheering for the Reds?
I’m co-founder of a PR agency called SharpOrange (third kit a few years back?), but I’ve become a bit more “famous” as patron and co-founder of the Library Land Project. We’ve been to more than 280 libraries in Massachusetts, and probably around 60 beyond. As we move to a nonprofit delivery model, we want to educate and advocate for the absolutely critical role they play in our communities.
Hope to see you all in a library, a Liverpool pub, or Anfield Road some day soon. Thanks for letting me share the love I feel for this club and community. Be well. YNWA.