A pandemic wasn’t the first time we saw Liverpool Football being postponed. The first time the world saw a season get postponed was during the second World War. Today we asked players and fans to shelter at home and come up with ways to stay fit and entertained while being stuck in our homes. During the 1939 season we asked players and fans to leave their families while they served in World War II.
The second World War spread through Europe during the 1939-1940 season. It was Liverpool FC’s 48th season of football. Liverpool had only played three games and was sitting in the fourth spot on the table. How does this relate to the closure of football today? Just like today these players did not have a decision if they could keep playing or not. In 1939 most of the players went to war and in 2020 most of the players went to social media to keep the fans entertained. The team numbers were low due to most of them going off to war. Players like Arthur Riley, Berry Nieuwenhuys, Billy Liddell and Bob Paisley stayed with the team as they allowed replacements onto the team. This team played in the War League Cup. Which was the competition put together to fill the football void left by the war.
By now you are either saying well that is not fair that they still had football and all we got was professional players recording themselves playing video games. Just like the pandemic the start of the war was also a shock. Everyone in Liverpool had to change their way of life. Men were getting shipped to war and women and children were left at home. During the pandemic no one was being shipped anywhere, everyone was forced to be stuck at home together with no sports to watch. In 1939 there was no social media. They had propaganda posters to help lighten the mood of the war. The world was at war and there was no real answer to when it would be over and there was no real hope of safety in your own homes either. In 2020 your homes were the only safe place. The players that went to war had no way to communicate to their loved ones or to their fans. Liverpool fans were left with no hope that the world would be going back to normal life anytime soon. We now questioned when we would return to normal life but we had social media to help us stay distracted from that fear. In 1939 your favorite players could have been shipped off to serve for their country and you had to wait years to find out if they survived. All we had to do was wait for the official LFC page to post a Zoom from the morning workout. The fear for the players to stay safe and healthy was always there but we were blessed to be constantly updated. The players entertained us with clever Instagram videos and posts. We even got to watch Trent Alexander Arnold complete in a FIFA tournament. Players like Virgil Van Dyke checked in with us making sure we all knew they missed us like we missed them. Our coach even let us follow him while he learned how to do things like tie a tie. All these things kept us at ease waiting for the word on if we would see a finish to the season.
When football stopped in 1939 LFC was sitting in fourth place with only have played three games. In March of 2020 we were getting closer to the end of the season sitting at the top of the table. When LFC fans heard the news of football being postponed it struck a lot of questions. Will there be an end to the season? If they come back will Liverpool be able to pull off the league win? Will they just hand LFC the win? We should feel lucky that we only had to wait a few months for those questions to be answered. As we get closer to the reboot of the season it makes us happy that all our favorite players are stepping on the pitch again. We now get to laugh as they pick on each other, we get to comment on their quarantine hair styles and see who was taking Zoom workouts seriously.
Social media kept the LFC fans at ease during the pandemic. We watched the players adjust to the new normal and get to continue to do that as we start the season again. There are a lot of similarities to the postponed season in 1939 compared to 2020 and there are a lot of things different. No matter what those were I am happy to know that all the LFC players are healthy and ready to finish the season. Us as fans should feel very lucky to be able to watch from home or even have a cardboard cutout attending a game for us. We could have been helping rebuild a community after it was bombed by the enemy. Now we may have to end up rebuilding the Everton fans if we win the title at Goodison Park. During the war Liverpool was celebrating their 48th season of existence. Today they are in their 128th season of existence. Records were broke and titles were won since the last stoppage of football and it was merely just a stamp in history. Many years down the line more titles will be won and records will be breaking and the 2020 pandemic will be another stamp in history.