In the fifth century, the whole of Europe was swallowed up by the various tribes who lived outside of the Roman Empire – Visigoths, Huns, Vandals, Saxons, and Franks. Barbarians. They had not been “Christianized” but they were militarized and they took a crumbling Roman Empire and turned it inside out.
1,619 years later, they would return in the form of Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur fans! They were to invade the Holy city of Madrid for the weekend. They would come by plane, car, vans, busses and trains. They drunk alcohol like nobody had ever seen. They sang songs and they dressed in their respective war colors of red and white, they were fearless and frightening!
Madrid was unable to defend itself against the hordes. Their goal – the Champion’s League trophy. Their destination – the Metropolitano Stadium near the airport in Madrid. The day was hot, the enemy barely knew what hit them. Liverpool won the battle; the Spurs were sent reeling and the Madrieleos regained their city after total occupation and devastation. It was victory for all except the Spurs fans.
Liverpool fans are called scousers. The word “scouse” is a shortened form of “lobscouse”. It refers to a stew commonly eaten by sailors. In the 19th century, poorer people in Liverpool and its surrounding area ate scouse as it was a cheap dish, and familiar to the families of seafarers. Outsiders tended to call these people “scousers”. Now they are the modern-day barbarians who support Liverpool Football club. Known for their famous anthem, they barely know that their national anthem is “You’ll Never Walk Alone” from the show Carousel by Rogers and Hammerstein.
The other barbarian fans rooted for the Tottenham Hotspurs. Hotspur is a reference to the First Earl of Northumberland who attempted to overthrow King Henry IV at the end of the fourteenth century! His name was Henry Percy but he was referred to as Haatspore by the Scots for the speed of his attack. He was fast and sped into battle sometimes recklessly, to the amazement of all around him. He would get his horse to move faster by using his spurs. However, he met his match and was slain by the army of King Henry IV. Today, Tottenham Hotspur carries with it this piece of very cool history referenced by Shakespeare in Henry IV Part 1. As Hotspur was slain, so were the modern-day Spurs.