By Chris Wright
“It’s Creek on the left, dips inside…”
Comedian Alan Davies has apologised over comments he made on his football podcast about Liverpool’s refusal to play on the anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster – a steadfast decision that has had the knock-on effect of leaving Chelsea with just three days between their game against Tottenham (Sunday 15th April) and the first leg of their Champions League semi-final against Barcelona.
Davies argued, in a round-about way, that Chelsea should be given preference:
“Liverpool and the 15th, that gets on my tits that shit. What are you talking about, ‘We won’t play on the day’? Why can’t they? My mum died on 22nd August. I don’t stay in all day on 22 August.
“Do they play on the date of the Heysel Stadium disaster? How many dates do they not play on? Do Man United play on the date of Munich? Do Rangers play on the date when all their fans died in that disaster whatever year that was – 1971?”
“Every interview [Dalglish] has given this season he looks like he wants to headbutt the interviewer. This tight-mouthed, furious, frowning, leaning-forward, bitter Glaswegian ranting: ‘Liverpool FC do not play on April 15th.'”
“Hillsborough is the most awful thing that’s happened in my life, in terms of football. It’s one of the worst tragedies in English peacetime history. But it’s ridiculous that they refuse to play on that day any more.”
This, rather unsurprisingly, didn’t go down particularly well with some of the more tetchy elements of the Liverpool support. ‘Someone said something about Hillsborough that wasn’t 100% solemn and reverent? GET THE BASTARD!!!’
Davies later used his Twitter account to deny that he had been disrespectful to the families of those affected – let’s face it, he hadn’t – and that he was donating £1,000 to the Justice Campaign by way of penance:
“The tone I took on the podcast was inappropriate for this subject. I support the campaign for justice for the 96.
“I said the Hillsborough disaster was the worst event in modern peacetime history. I was on a terrace listening to a radio as it happened.
“Many disagree but I feel that the Liverpool v Everton semi-final could be played on Apr 15th. Apologies to those upset by that situation.”
This being Twitter, Davies also revealed that he’s received death threats for making what was essentially a wholly reasonable point.
Ain’t people grand?