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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Mark Wakefield

'Enough is enough' - FSG sent clear Liverpool message that left Jurgen Klopp 'disappointed'

When times are tough, Liverpool fans always seem to be able to join together as a collective to send a message to the powers above.

April 2021 saw that with the attempted formation of a European Super League. The message from Reds supporters was so strong it got a video apology from Fenway Sports Group chief John W. Henry himself.

This is not the first time that the club’s owners have been forced to backtrack after admitting to making a mistake. It was also the case on this day in 2016.

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Liverpool were playing Sunderland in the Premier League at Anfield that day. But the action on the pitch was playing second fiddle to what was happening off the field.

Earlier in the week, the club had announced changes to the ticket pricing structure for matches. It would have seen prices for a regular match ticket increase from £59 up to £77, as well as a £1,000 season ticket being announced for the following season.

It has been argued by the club that the structure offered greater accessibility and affordability for fans. This included a 45% of matches tickets decreasing in price, 64% of season tickets being reduced or staying the same in cost, plus better availability for local fans and around 1,500 £9 tickets for category C games.

This did not appease a large portion of Liverpool fans. In fact they voted with their feet against Sunderland. James Milner and Roberto Firmino had put the Reds 2-0 up by the 69th minute, and Liverpool looked to be cruising to victory.

But everything changed in the 77th minute. A large group of fans, estimated to be around 10,000, of the capacity stadium got up and left their seats, with long queues forming for the exit.

Before fans headed for the exit, chants from the Kop could be heard aimed towards the owners. One chant that could be heard said: “Enough is enough, you greedy b******s, enough is enough”.

This led to supporters from all four corners of Anfield breaking into applause, with even some Sunderland fans appreciating the dedication from the Liverpool crowd. There was then a rendition of ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ in the crowd that remained, with noticeable gaps in the stands where empty seats had formed.

Jurgen Klopp was not in attendance for that game. He had been rushed to hospital that weekend to have an operation for appendicitis.

As a result, assistants Zeljko Buvac and Peter Krawietz took charge of the team. Just a couple of days after receiving an appendectomy, Klopp was back on press conference duty where he gave an update on his health.

"I feel good. A lot of people have had this before,” said Klopp on February 8, two days after the Sunderland match.

"I'm very thankful to our doctor because he said, 'you should go to hospital', and I wasn't sure.

"The hospital doctor was a season ticket holder so he didn't see the game either."

But when the topic of the questions got onto the mass walkout, Klopp was in a different mood. He no longer had a smile, but was rather disappointed by what had transpired at Anfield in his absence.

"I heard about this problem but I've had a lot of things to do in the last few weeks, but now I know it is my problem too, of course," said Klopp.

"But everything I could say about this now would make it more complicated because first of all I have to collect a few bits of information.

"What I know is everyone in the club has a big interest in finding a solution for this.

"It is not what we want, we don't want the people leaving the stadium before the game is finished.

"That is all I can say about this, but of course when I heard it (the walkout) I was disappointed."

The result of the match did not seem to matter too much in the grand scheme of things that night. With Liverpool 2-0 up and cruising, the walkout signified a change in momentum in the game.

Goals from Adam Johnson and Jermain Defoe in the final five minutes saw Liverpool drop two points and held to a 2-2 draw. But there were much bigger issues on everyone’s mind of the Liverpool support, and the club’s owners were fully aware of it, if they weren’t before.


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