National anthem controversy at Anfield: Klopp weighs in
As Premier League clubs prepare to play ‘God Save The King’ during the weekend of King Charles’ Coronation, Liverpool’s decision on whether to follow suit remains uncertain. The Premier League has asked clubs to display an official portrait of the King and The Queen Consort as well as the Coronation Logo on big screens, alongside the national anthem.
Despite this, Liverpool fans have a long-standing tradition of booing the national anthem and recent examples include the FA Cup final last season and jeering at Prince William during this season’s Community Shield. The hostility towards the government, which began during the 1980s when they planned to put the city into a “managed decline,” intensified after their failings in the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster.
As Liverpool prepares to host Brentford next Saturday, Klopp was asked if he had any say in the club’s decision to play the national anthem. The German manager responded by saying that it was a club decision and he wouldn’t have any input. He added that if his opinion counted, it still wouldn’t be up to him.
It’s a delicate decision for Liverpool, as whichever route they choose could lead to controversy. If they decide not to play the national anthem, there may be backlash from other Premier League clubs who decide to follow the procedure. But if they do play it and the fans boo, then Liverpool will once again face negative headlines. With the city’s left-leaning population feeling disconnected from the government’s policies and the state, celebrating the Kings’ Coronation could be seen as a step too far for many.