One of the memorable scenes from this past weekend’s Liverpool-Manchester United game at Anfield, aside from Juan Mata’s pair of spectacular goals and Steven Gerrard’s epic 40-something-second cameo, was several Liverpool fans holding Mario Balotelli back from murdering Manchester United’s Chris Smalling.
During Sunday’s second half, the questionable United defender appeared to shove Balotelli into the advertising boards after the ball escaped the field of play. Balotelli wasn’t pleased and seemed ready to go into full Balotelli mode, which, considering the Italian never gets the benefit of the doubt, would have probably ended in shades of red. But Liverpool fans weren’t interested in that path; thus, their intervention.
It was quintessential 12th man effort – fans imposing themselves on the game. Balotelli acknowledged as much on Facebook:
You’ll never walk alone. This is one of the rare instances where the Liverpool slogan was both true and quantifiable. Balotelli wasn’t alone. He was with several grown men when he could have been by himself, boiling on the sideline thinking of murder scenarios. But thanks to a group of reasonable Fans of Carragher (I just named these fans — kind of like Daughters of the American Revolution), Balotelli didn’t crime Smalling.
Liverpool still lost, but the comeback attempt would’ve been much harder without Balotelli on the field, considering Anfield legend Steven Gerrard was already in the showers exfoliating after his red card.
Liverpool slogans are accurate from time to time. Apparently, social media guru Mario Balotelli is well aware of that.