No. 46 – The Homecoming of all Homecomings
Istanbul…. Its one of the greatest finals of all time, people will still be talking about that game for decades to come and that save Jerzy made from Shevchenko at the end but who will ever forget the magical homecoming celebrations the night after the final.
Liverpool had been waiting 21 years to welcome the European trophy back to Merseyside but this time it was here to stay. Up to a million fans had gathered in Liverpool to welcome their heroes back. The day of celebration had begun when the team touched down at Liverpool John Lennon Airport to be greeted by dignitaries including the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Alan Dean.
Due to the sheer crowd, it took over four hours for the parade to make its six mile journey from the M62 to the city centre. Liverpool city had been taken over with Red, banners, scarves, jerseys flags could be seen for miles!
Speaking to liverpoolfc.tv, Steven Gerrard couldn’t quite believe the amount of supporters who came out to applaud Liverpool in their thousands during the parade of the city. “It was unbelievable. None of the players imagined there would be so many people there, waiting to cheer us on. The scenes were incredible. I was sitting on the plane coming home with my medal and thinking ‘life can’t get any better than this,’ and then you saw those fans everywhere. Someone told me there was about a million people on the route and it was just so special. I can remember the celebrations following the cup treble in 2001, but this was something else. The lads were just buzzing. For some of the foreign players it was a real eye-opener but this is Liverpool Football Club, and that’s why we never gave in against Milan when it looked like a lost cause.’
The city had come to a sudden halt, this was Liverpool football clubs night. 300,000 fans had quickly gathered outside St. Georges hall to celebate the unbelievable comeback in Istanbul.
It became a night to cherish forever, Liverpool had experienced the treble winning celebrations of 2001 but 2005 was the comecoming of all homecomings!