Former Liverpool idol Michael Owen certainly put the cat amongst the pigeons when he stated that the winning culture at Manchester United is greater than at any other club he has ever been at during his career. Anfield fans had plenty of reasons to feel bitter about their club last season, for a fleeting moment one can almost even feel sorry for them, but they have now turned their frustration on one of their own legends simply because he had the courage to call a spade a spade.
Owen who has enjoyed distinguished spells at Liverpool and to a lesser extent Real Madrid and Newcastle now believes that the drive and mentality at United sets them apart from any other side he has played at. The former England striker was surprisingly signed by Sir Alex Ferguson last summer on a free transfer and although he endured an injury hit campaign, the atmosphere around the club and the insatiable desire to win has struck him as the outstanding quality at Old Trafford.
“The thing that hit me at United is how driven everyone is” he admitted “I have been at some top clubs in my career but Giggs, Scholes, Neville and the manager are driven by winning. And, if they don’t win, you can feel that extra motivation. They are born to do it and that is why they have been so successful.”
Those comments had the same reaction as waving a red rag to a bull for many Liverpool fans still dirty on seeing Owen in a United shirt. What they seem to be forgetting is that former manager Rafa Benitez rejected the opportunity of taking Owen back to Anfield before eventually signing for Sir Alex.
Here’s a small sample of the venom being spewed by Liverpool fans at one of their former players – “he f****d on us, he shit on liverpool fc – the biggest club in britain an u say show the soft wool some respect – he plays 4 united”. Then there’s this charming one “I hope his kid get fuckin aids d c**t
Another was highly articulate when he simply wrote “MUNICH SCUM BAG”. There’s no point in highlighting more of the dozens of similar “intelligent” comments but if you want to satisfy your curiosity you can see them on this Liverpool Facebook Group
To be fair, there were also the odd one or two which showed far more maturity in their objective comments like this one did. Robin Duke wrote “Think some of you on here are just so blinkered by your hatred for all things United! What has he said that’s wrong here? Clearly there is a better winning mentality at United under Fergie otherwise they wouldn’t have won 11 Prem titles and all the FA Cups etc etc that they have won! It’s just basic common sense really. And Terrence, what you … See more saying, if you’re from Liverpool you’d understand the need for taunting them about Munich? I know many a LFC fan from Liverpool that wouldn’t do that, but I guess they got common decency, any LFC fan that taunts them about Munich forfeits the right to moan when anyone taunts us over Hillsborough!”
Then there was this from Richard McGill who wrote “do you know that the so called sprit of shankly group sing munich songs when they meet up which disgusts me as a life long lfc fan i would never do this and that group claim they are doing it the shankly way.”
It has to be admitted that every club has it’s share of mindless bigots but going by these comments, there appears to be far more of them at Anfield than any self respecting club deserves.
Does Owen deserve more respect from his former fans?