You’ll never walk alone is a powerful song to hear sung by Liverpool supporters at Anfield.
There’s a great sense of solidarity to it. It must be the best club anthem out there.
Though last weekend, as has been well noted, a Liverpool player was left very much alone.
Lorius Karius, their German goalkeeper, had made two bad errors in the Champions League final in Kiev against Real Madrid and Liverpool had lost the match.
After the final whistle, he sat hunched and crying in front of his goal. He knew what he’d done and was broken, a picture of loneliness.
Yet not one of the Liverpool players came over to him to offer support. After a while, a couple of Real Madrid players spoke kind words to him – but not one of his team mates.
Eventually, a member of the Liverpool backroom staff led him off the pitch.
But the social isolation on display, the public rejection by his colleagues, had been excruciating to watch.
‘Why’s no one going over to him?’ we were all saying.
It developed further on Twitter later as certain disgruntled fans referred to him as a ‘Nazi’ and made death threats.
As it transpired, You’ll never walk alone was not quite the contract we’d imagined. We didn’t read the small print:
‘You’ll never walk alone – as long as you don’t make a mistake.’
And this is a conditional contract many of us are familiar with.
‘I love you – as long as you do what I say or be what I want or never make a mistake.’
True love is different.
True love is kind with error…knows nothing of conditions or control.
…and doesn’t leave goal keepers crying alone in Kiev.