Why Do Liverpool Fans Boo the National Anthem?

Why Do Liverpool Fans Boo the National Anthem

If you’re an avid football fan, you must have noticed Liverpool fans booing the National Anthem before a match. It’s a tradition that has been going on for years now, but not everyone knows why it started and the reasons behind it. In this blog post, we will cover the historical context of Liverpool fans and the National Anthem, why they boo it, and what Jurgen Klopp has said about it. We’ll also delve into the reasons behind the anthem booing and why Liverpool played it in the first place. So if you’re curious about this unique tradition of Liverpool fans, keep reading to find out more.

Historical Context of Liverpool Fans and the National Anthem

Historical Context of Liverpool Fans and the National Anthem

Liverpool fans’ antipathy towards the national anthem stems from the Hillsborough disaster in the 1980s, which sparked a deep mistrust of the establishment. The city has a left-leaning reputation and has long been at odds with conservative governments, including Margaret Thatcher’s. For many Liverpudlians, booing the anthem is a form of protest against social decline and political decisions that have adversely affected the city. This historical context has shaped the sentiments of Liverpool supporters and continues to be a significant factor in their response towards the national anthem.

Why did Liverpool play the National Anthem?

Why did Liverpool play the National Anthem

Liverpool played the National Anthem at their matches as a sign of respect and patriotism. Playing the National Anthem is a tradition common in many sports events, especially those involving national teams or representing a country. It symbolises unity and pride for the players, fans, and the country as a whole. By playing the National Anthem, Liverpool shows their support and loyalty to their nation, creating a sense of unity among their players and fans. This tradition is deeply rooted in sports culture and serves as a reminder of the values and ideals that the nation stands for.

Why Do Liverpool Fans Boo the National Anthem?

Since the 1980s, Liverpool fans have booed the national anthem. There are several explanations for this, but the most prevalent are:

1. Protest against the establishment

Liverpool is renowned for its strong sense of identity and tight-knit community, and its supporters have a rich tradition of challenging the established order. The act of booing during the national anthem is regarded as a form of dissent against the government, monarchy, and other institutions that are perceived to be disconnected from the concerns of everyday individuals.

2. Dissatisfaction with the condition of the country

Liverpool Fans Boo the National Anthem

Over the past few decades, Liverpool has suffered from a significant economic downturn, leading its supporters to believe that the government has not adequately supported the city. The act of booing during the national anthem serves as a means for them to voice their discontent and dissatisfaction with the country’s current situation.

3. Remembrance of the Hillsborough disaster

In 1989, a tragic incident known as the Hillsborough disaster took place, resulting in the loss of 97 Liverpool fans during a crush at an FA Cup semi-final match. Regrettably, those accountable for this disaster were never brought to justice, leading many Liverpool fans to suspect that the government concealed the truth. The act of booing the national anthem serves as a means to honour and commemorate the victims of Hillsborough while also expressing their protest against the injustice they endured.

It should be highlighted that the act of booing the national anthem is not universally shared among Liverpool fans. A significant number of fans do not endorse this practice, and a few even join in singing the anthem alongside the rest of the stadium. Nevertheless, the matter of booing the national anthem remains a contentious topic that is expected to persist for an extended period.

Reasons Behind the Anthem Booing

Reasons Behind the Anthem Booing

The national anthem being played by Liverpool is a longstanding tradition in English football. It is customary for the home team to play the national anthem before the start of a match as a sign of respect and patriotism. Playing the national anthem helps create a sense of unity among players, fans, and the nation as a whole. Being one of the most successful and historic clubs in English football, Liverpool upholds this tradition and proudly plays the national anthem before their matches. It is a symbol of their connection to the city, the country and their commitment to representing their nation on the football pitch.

What Has Jurgen Klopp Said About Booing the National Anthem?

According to a BBC Sport report, Liverpool fans booed ‘Abide With Me’ and ‘God Save the Queen’ before the game at Wembley Stadium on Saturday. However, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said that the club’s fans would not boo the national anthem ‘without a reason’ after jeering was heard from the club’s supporters before the FA Cup final. Klopp praised the club’s fans as “wonderful people” after MPs rebuked a section of the audience for booing the Duke of Cambridge prior to kick-off at Wembley Stadium.


In conclusion, the act of Liverpool fans booing the national anthem is rooted in historical context and specific reasons. It is important to understand the reasons behind this behaviour and the sentiments of the fans. While some may argue that it is disrespectful, others believe it is a form of protest or expression of their own identity. Ultimately, it is a complex issue that cannot be simplified. It is crucial to have open discussions and respect different perspectives on this matter. Jurgen Klopp, the Liverpool manager, has stated that it is important to listen to the fans’ voices and empathize with their emotions, even if we may not agree with their actions.

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