Caxton St, the gateway to Lang Park/Suncorp Stadium turned red on Friday July 17.
A week after Queensland’s record-breaking Origin win, Liverpool played the Brisbane Roar.
I was lucky enough to work that night at a sporting merchandise store on Caxton St. It was here I glimpsed the passion of English soccer/football fans first hand.
I had worked the deciding Origin game and saw the procession of maroon up and down Caxton St, the “Queenslander” rallying cries and playful ribbing of NSW fans. I thought that was as big as it got. I was wrong.
It started about quarter to three, when a massive group of Liverpool fans marched down Roma St singing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’, the team’s anthem which is on most of their merchandise. What got me is kick-off was still four hours away.
I’m not a massive soccer fan and have never been to an EPL game, so the passion of the Liverpool fans was astonishing, especially as it was a cold, windy afternoon in Brisbane.
As I got to work in Caxton St, the sea of red continued; big groups from overseas, couples, families, even some Roar fans wore a Liverpool scarf. Unlike Origin, where state loyalties are important, this match was about celebrating football in general, the result didn’t matter (though Liverpool won 2-1). It showed why we love sport: fans coming together to watch their teams and enjoy themselves. The party atmosphere was reflected in the Liverpool fans’ singing along Caxton St. As a neutral observer, it was a joy to witness. For a Liverpool or Roar fan, the memories will be treasured for a lifetime.