This article is part of Football FanCast’s Opinion series, which provides analysis, insight and opinion on any issue within the beautiful game, from Paul Pogba’s haircuts to League Two relegation battles…
Why Joe Gomez was booed at Wembley Stadium on Thursday makes little sense.
The Liverpool defender was involved in an altercation with Raheem Sterling in the England camp after the two had clashed during the Reds’ fixture against Manchester City in the Premier League last weekend. However, the 24-year-old winger was the one who was dropped for the match, even if there has been some discussion as to whether Gareth Southgate made the right decision.
Sterling may be a fantastic player, but he was at fault – which he confirmed in his own words on Twitter after the match against Montenegro. 22-year-old Gomez cannot be blamed for his teammate’s actions, yet he received the brunt of the abuse from the crowd. No wonder he was said to be “devastated” afterwards.
Watch Liverpool Videos With StreamFootball.tv Below
This is just the latest episode in a tense atmosphere between Liverpool and the national team. One Reds fan called into talkSPORT this year to adamantly say he was “Scouse”, not English, but there is truth in his and other people’s comments.
So as I sat at Wembley for the Community Shield and boo’d the national anthem @lfc fans got criticised but yet @J_Gomez97 comes on in the same stadium after doing nothing to 🐍 he gets boo’d 🤷🏻♂️🤷🏻♂️🤷🏻♂️ We Are Not English We Are Scouse club football is the only thing that matters 🤫🤫
— #2020 (@garethryder2) November 15, 2019
— LFC Dagger (@lfc_dagger) November 15, 2019
Tonight proved one thing yet again
— Champions of Europe (@mainstandred) November 14, 2019
There is apathy towards England from sections of the Anfield faithful. When the Reds were challenging for the Premier League title last term, there were many rival fans who didn’t want them to lift the trophy. Even though winning clubs are often disliked, it is hard to remember such a distaste towards one side.
The reaction and vitriol towards Liverpool’s Gomez makes it easier to understand why portions of the club’s supporters are against the national side. Why would you be fully behind a team whose fans boo their own player despite him doing nothing wrong, and damage his morale in the process?
The situation was made even worse by the fact that the England supporters appeared to be siding with Sterling, a player who is far from popular with a number of Reds followers after being booed himself.
Incidents like this will do little to reduce the fans’ apathy towards England. For all involved, it is a crying shame.