The official FA Cup trophy visited the city ahead of this weekend’s fourth round ties which will see both Everton and Liverpool strive to reach the last 16 of the competition.
As David Moyes and Kenny Dalglish were putting the finishing touches to their preparation for this weekend’s matches, shoppers were handed a rare chance to get close up to English football’s most prestigious knockout cup.
The trophy was on display for one day only in the city centre branch of nationwide sports retail giants JJB Sports, with customers given the opportunity to be photographed with it.
Katherine Lyons, a sales assistant who works for JJB and is a Liverpool fan, said: “It’s great to see everyone’s faces in the store and the excitement that the cup being her has created. I myself had my picture taken with it and I’m made up, and I’m sure many people throughout the day will feel the same.”
Everton face Fulham in all-Premier league clash on Friday evening, whilst Liverpool take on Manchester United in the tie of the round at lunchtime on Saturday.
It will be the first time the clubs have met since the Suarez-Evra race row although both clubs’ managers have called for calm in recent days.
Ged Dunne, the manager of the JJB store told JMU journalism: “This is a great time for the store ahead of the hugely anticipated games this weekend. The FA have given us this great opportunity to get a real buzz in the store.”
The FA Cup, which was first competed for in 1871, is the oldest association football competition in the world, and is synonymous with giant-killing acts from sides like Hereford, Sutton United and Blyth Spartans.
Everton fans last enjoyed success in 1995 when skipper Dave Watson lifted the cup after an unforgettable victory over Sir Alex Ferguson’s side.
Reds’ fans only have to cast their minds back to 2006 when Steven Gerrard led the Anfield side to victory against West Ham.
Fans from both sides of Stanley Park will be hoping this won’t be the last time the prestigious trophy will be seen in Liverpool as they dream of success in the final at Wembley on May 5th.
By Josh Weale
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Everton and Liverpool will hope to reach the 5th round this weekend; on display in the JJB store