11 Dec 2007

The hypocrisy of so-called Liverpool 'fans' over Momo Sissoko

On Monday, Momo Sissoko publicly expressed his discontent at being dumped on the sidelines for Tuesday’s must-win tie against Marseille.

Given the fact the Mali International is not one of Liverpool's most popular players, one thing is certain: Over the next few days, he will be subjected to a ridiculous amount of misguided, hypocritical character-assassination by so called Liverpool 'fans'.

Sissoko, who was voted man of the match against Reading, clearly does not feel as if he is being given a fair chance at Anfield:

"It is a difficult time. I am good enough to play in this team. It's the manager's decision. I respect it but I will discuss this in January. I will make an assessment with my agents and the manager. I have been asking myself that question for a while”.

Strong words from Sissoko, but the most pertinent comment he made was the following:

"I accept healthy competition but to play one match every five does not interest me."

Momo’s frustration is entirely understandable, but he is 100% wrong to make his comments in public. His complaints will no doubt enrage Rafa, who will probably banish him to the sidelines like he did with Peter Crouch earlier in the season, after the big man made a tame public comment about rotation.

I personally agree that the competition for places in the center of Liverpool’s midfield IS unhealthy, but that is another article. For now, I want to focus on the inevitable negative reaction to Sissoko’s comments, which will expose the disgraceful hypocrisy rife amongst so-called Liverpool ‘fans.

Momo will be slammed and crucified across the net for daring to speak out in public. He will be called selfish; his ability will be questioned; he’ll be called ‘sh** and be told to fu** off out of Liverpool. Fans on message boards across the net will seize the opportunity to castigate and denigrate the player in the most personal and insulting of terms. Mob mentality will rule and the cyber-yobs will vomit out their vicious vitriol.

It’s already happening, as evidenced by this thread below:


You can also see a perfect example of the gutter fan response as vomited out by the ignorant, intolerant fanatics who inhabit the worst LFC football forum on the net - 'Six Crazy Minutes':


These are the same fans that make continuous excuses for Steven Gerrard’s double flirtation with Chelsea. For two seasons in a row, Gerrard threatened to leave Liverpool. He held the club to ransom and made repeated public threats about how he wanted to leave and how he would consider his future at the end of the season.

No other player in the history of Liverpool FC has disrespected the club more. Compared to Gerrard, Sissoko is a Saint, but the hypocritical fans can’t and won’t see it that way. Gerrard can do no wrong, even if he spits on the club he supposedly loves.

The same principle applies to Gerrard’s recent comments about England being more important to him than Liverpool, or his xenophobic views on premiership foreigners. If it was Sissoko saying the same things there would be blood on the streets! It’s Steven Gerrard though, so he gets away with it.

This kind of hypocrisy is a cancer in football and exposes a simple truth about fickle fandom: Favouritism takes preference over fairness. Different rules apply when it comes to popular players like Gerrard, Carragher and Fernando Torres; whenever they do something wrong it is immediately forgiven and justified ad infinitum.

When it’s the likes of Sissoko, Peter Crouch or current whipping boy John Arne Riise, the knives come out immediately, even if the indiscretion is comparatively minor. Take Fernando Torres’ recent public outburst in support of Rafa:

"Benitez has created a team of people who are indebted to him. It's certain if he goes many players will think about their futures”.

This is an unacceptable comment tantamount to holding the club to ransom. Anyone who condones such a comment is not a Liverpool fan, as saying such things in public is incompatible with the spirit and philosophy of the club. It is far worse than Sissoko’s comment above, wherein he merely states that he will consider his future. Torres went much further than that by issuing an ultimatum: If Rafa goes, we all go.

Where was the criticism for Torres? Nowhere is the answer. I wrote an article on this site criticizing Torres’ comments, which was also published on Sportingo. The response was utterly predictable: The majority of ‘fans’ defended Torres to the hilt, making all manner of feeble excuses, and I was roundly attacked for having the gall to criticize him.

Disgraceful hypocrisy pure and simple.

If you say anything critical about one the ‘mob’s’ favourites, they hurl increasingly unimaginative insults and try and batter you into submission with personal attacks and character assassination. Exactly the same thing happens when one of their whipping boys does something they perceive to be wrong.

Take Peter Crouch for example – he has been hounded incessantly on Internet forums for his staggeringly tame comments about Rafa’s rotation policy earlier in the season:

“There are times when it can be frustrating, but I fully understand the manager’s thinking and when called upon, I just have to make sure I am ready. Hopefully I can play a few more games than I have been doing, but I’m not too frustrated".

As a result of that comment, he was labeled as someone who was always ‘complaining about rotation’, despite only making one public comment on the subject. This kind of thing is perpetuated by ignorant ‘fans’ who are so shallow that they concentrate more on the way Crouch looks than on his obvious footballing skill.

Again, if it was someone like Gerrard making that comment, then no one would’ve given it a second though.

I may criticize Steven Gerrard on occasion, but I never lose my sense of fairness. If he plays well, I praise him. If he does something I perceive to be wrong, I highlight it. The same goes for any player in the squad, and my articles prove that. Fairness is supposed to be the hallmark of Liverpool fans, but that is slowly being eroded just like everything else about Liverpool FC’s wonderful legacy.

Just watch what happens over the next few days as Momo’s comments become widely publicized. As I said at the beginning, he will be crucified by the majority of Liverpool fans and websites, and a tidal wave of hatred, personal insults and ability assassination will flood the web.

Then witness the feeble excuses and pathetic justifications from sheep-like fans the next time Steven Gerrard or some other fan favourite says something of a similar nature.

This is the increasingly depressing reality of modern football fandom.


  1. I have my own issues regarding the fickle nature and unacceptable behavior from supposed Liverpool fans. This was at its most intense during a small "Rafa Out!" campaign when our season took a turn for the worse earlier on. The ungrateful nature of some fans for those who have served the club and done so well, is a very sad state of affairs and perhaps a reflection of today's deterioration of society on a whole.

    However, I do want to address some of the points you brought up because I don't agree completely with everything you've said.

    I agree that Sissoko should not be "ripped apart" for his comments and that we should be fair to our players. However, there is a reason Sissoko, Riise (as proven in the ECL Semi vs Chelsea - both home and away) and Kuyt (earlier in the season), are indeed "whipping boys". They usually acquire that status from repeated poor performances for the team that frustrate the fans as a whole (myself included).

    I believe that the response from a large amount of fans is completely unacceptable; demonizing our players because of a slump or disregarding all of their previous contributions just so that they can maximize their pathetic arguments to call for their heads. I do believe though that we SHOULD question those players and in the case of Riise, he was putting in poor performances on a VERY regular basis. He became this season's Zenden (except Zenden was BETTER!).

    With regards to Torres comments, I think that they were necessary at a time when Benitez' job was under threat and while it is very much against the way we do things, so is undermining our manager. I think they were slightly inappropriate and controversial but I forgive him because I believe it helped to give Benitez the support he so needed at the time and in a way I was happy he did it (even though I know it was wrong).

    With regards to Steven Gerrard, you really have to "define" disloyalty before you even imply that he is disloyal. I am sure he could have had a 50% pay-rise at any other major club in Europe but he wanted to stay at Liverpool and just be given a respectable raise in accordance with his effort and influence. While I would have been pissed off both with him and the board had he left, he DIDN'T leave and it was mostly due to him just biting the bullet rather than Liverpool paying his so-called ransom.

    All in all, I see the point you make and I am in agreement with your main perspective regarding the deterioration of the quality of Liverpool fans. I just thought I would highlight my differences in opinion on some of the specific cases you raised.