Why Liverpool are the Rightful Owners of The Liver Birds

It is rumoured that the Liver Birds oversee separate sections of Liverpool. One looks inwards and watches over the locals, while the second statue stares outwards and watches over the Scouse sailors.

However, it is also rumoured that the two seabirds are an argumentative couple, facing away from each other because of an ongoing dispute. It is this fable that best epitomises Everton and Liverpool’s ongoing feud: Who has the largest claim to the Liver Birds? Everton or Liverpool.

Below, we’ve put forward our argument for Liverpool Football Club.

Liverpool and The Liver Birds

Liverpool is a city of two’s: two cathedrals, two tunnels and, in 1892, two football teams. Following the formation of the club which bores the name of the city, Liverpool Football Club adopted the Liver Bird as the team’s emblem and thus, a 126-year argument ensued.

The National Field newspaper wrote on September 19, 1892 – following Liverpool’s match with Bury – “A flag floated on the old staff, bearing the letters L.F.A surmounted with the Liver. Right proudly did it wave over the field of battle and seemed to beam on its patrons with a hopeful smile.” It seems that the “beaming” seabird was a constant fixture at Anfield – much like the banners that “wave over” the Kop today.

If any doubt or confusion remained about the seabird’s owners, when Liverpool were crowned champions for the third time in 1922, a new banner was unwound with the Liver Bird brazenly tacked in the centre even more ardently than before.

This presentation seemed like a premeditated plan to claim the civic emblem as their own and, in 1950, Liverpool began to use a club badge which featured a certain domestic seabird.

The Club Crest

It was in the 1950 FA Cup Final when the Liver Bird first featured on Liverpool’s Spice Boy-esc white shirt.

The Liverpool badge has had various makeovers since then; in 1955 the monogram ‘LFC’ was added to the emblem. Then, in 1992, The Shankly Gates and the maxim “You’ll Never Walk Alone” were included. And finally, in 1993, two eternal flames were added in memory of the 96.

But, the one constant has always been the unchanged Liver Bird.

Unsuccessful Counter Arguments

In November 2008, Liverpool Football Club unsuccessfully attempted to trademark the Liver Bird.

“The Liver Bird belongs to all the people of Liverpool, [it] is a symbol of the city,” said Flo Clucas, while a man from North Liverpool argued that the seabirds were a wider symbol of Liverpool and not Liverpool Football Club.

One of the rather more unusual arguments came from Keith Wilson, an Everton shareholder who attempted to “reclaim” the Liver Birds. Keith argued that the seabirds should be on both kits “because they’re both from Liverpool.” As one could imagine, this idea didn’t go down particularly well.

It is undeniable that the Liver Birds are Liverpool’s. However, when it comes to football, the Liver Bird is synonymous with Liverpool Football Club.

The Bastion Bar & Restaurant

The Liver Birds

The Liver Bird is blazoned across the memorabilia covered walls of the unique Bastion Bar & Restaurant located within the Shankly Hotel.

The spectacular hotel is ideal for overnight stays, watching Liverpool matches and basking in and enjoying unseen memorabilia.

Sound exciting? Get in touch with our friendly team today by calling 0151 236 0166 or email reservations@shanklyhotel.com

Keep up to date with everything going on at the hotel by following The Shankly Hotel Facebook.

Liverpool FC History: How Bill Shankly Led Liverpool to Greatness

Liverpool FC weren’t always in the top half of the footballing league tables, before Bill Shankly took over as manager, the club were struggling. When Shankly arrived at Anfield on Monday 14th December 1959, Liverpool had been in the Second Division for five years and had been beaten by non-league Worcester City in the 1958 – 59 FA Cup.

However, their success all came down to a pivotal year when Bill Shankly led Liverpool to promotion from Division Two, showcasing both Shankly’s shrewd ability in the transfer market and his outstanding management skills.

We take a look back at some fascinating Liverpool FC history and discover how Shankly built the club into the force we know it as today.

Building a New TeamShankly training

When Shankly arrived at Anfield, the team and ground was in disrepair. There was no means of watering the pitch, the training ground at Melwood was a shambles and the Liverpool squad consisted largely of average players, with a few promising reserves.

Shankly quickly decided that he needed to strengthen the team through the middle, they needed a strong goalkeeper, a centre half who could stop goals and somebody up front who could create and score goals.

Shankly highlighted a list of 24 players that he wanted to replace, all were placed on the transfer list and had left the club within a year. One of the men on the list was legendary Billy Liddell, a player that was so loved that for a short time Liverpool were referred to as ‘Liddellpool’.

Liddell had played for the club for 22 years and remains the oldest goalscorer in the Reds’ history. Although the decision may not have seemed too hard to make, as Liddell was now an aged player, it was still difficult to replace a man of that stature within the club. But, Shankly knew the squad needed a change and he needed to build a whole new team of his own.

Gaining Financial Support

Bill Shankly was aware that Liverpool FC were struggling for money. They hadn’t won a trophy for 13 years and had spent six years in Division Two, meaning that the Board of Directors were reluctant to invest any money in them.

However, with the help of Eric Sawyer, Shankly was able to secure the signatures of the two players at the top of his transfer wish list, Ian St John and Ron Yeats. These two players, as well as goalkeeper Tommy Lawrence, were described as the backbone of the new team.

St John was a hugely important influence at Liverpool and played for the team for 10 years. Similarly, Yeats proved to be a great signing for Shankly and went on to captain Liverpool, lifting seven trophies during his career with them. Both players instantly went down in Liverpool FC history.

Unrivalled Managerial Ability

When Shankly first came to Liverpool, he had orchestrated a lot of departures from the team. However, those that showed real talent and success stayed at Liverpool, which showed Shankly’s real skill as a manager.

Liverpool FC’s key striker, Roger Hunt, was a driving force in the club’s improved performance. He scored 41 goals in 41 league appearances in the 61/62 season and Shankly used Hunt extensively in the two previous seasons, too, showing the strength in his judgement.

It was clear that Shankly was not just selling players to make a profit for a whole new squad, he was remoulding the one he had and making them into a Division One side.

And that is exactly what he did, in the 61/62 season Shankly lifted Liverpool out of Division Two forever. Shankly had built a squad that the fans had no fear would lose, they won their first six games and won the league title in April with five games to spare.

Liverpool FC Become Champions

When Liverpool made the leap from Division Two to Division One, it was a hugely significant event in Liverpool FC history. It kick started the golden age for football on Merseyside, the promotion saw Liverpool gain access to a better level of football and much more prestigious trophies were now up for grabs.

After their second season in Division One, Shankly won the league title with Liverpool FC and the following year they won the FA Cup for the very first time.

In his autobiography, Shankly recounted that among his many achievements, winning the 1965 FA Cup was his “greatest day”.

By the end of Bill Shankly’s management career at the club, Liverpool FC had become a First Division club that had won two FA Cups (1965 and 1974), the UEFA Cup (1973) and the FA Charity Shield in 1964, 1965 and 1966.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our look back some Liverpool FC history and how the legendary Bill Shankly developed LFC into the amazing football team they are today. If you’d like to delve into his fascinating life more, visit the Shankly Hotel and check out the never-seen-before memorabilia in the Bastion Bar and Restaurant. Or, why not try a Shankly Tour Experience and see the Liverpool Shanks loved.

We hope to see you soon!