Ahead of another entry in English football's biggest rivalry, a mixture of a commercial partner, Liverpool legends, and a sporting behemoth illustrated the enormous reach of Liverpool Football Club. The unlikely scene for all this was a Subway restaurant in central London.
Pele is arguably the greatest football player of all time and is undoubtedly a sporting legend. His name is synonymous with the Brazilian national team and a near-mythical era of sporting success on the international stage. Being a Global Ambassador for Subway naturally puts him in closer proximity to Liverpool as the restaurant chain is the club's official training food partner.
Pele and Liverpool are footballing institutions and will attract brand names looking to do business with the best football has to offer. Liverpool should be associated with the biggest and best names in the game. When Liverpool play rivals of note at home and in Europe, something has to be at stake. Last season, the title was contested for. This season, places in domestic cup finals and a potential place in the Champions League occupy the thoughts of Liverpool fans.
There aren't any English clubs left in European competitions this season after Everton exited the Europa League on Thursday. The eventual winners of this season's Champions League will most likely be Bayern Munich, Barcelona, or the holders Real Madrid. Liverpool's illustrious history ranks highly across the continent, but Merseyside's finest cannot yet compete with Europe's biggest powers. Brendan Rodgers will hope to qualify for Europe's top club competition next season to continue his resotration of the club as a Champions League regular before mapping out loftier ambitions.
The football icon was speaking on the importance of living a healthy and active lifestyle as well as the forthcoming game between Manchester United and Liverpool where he'll be a guest. Liverpool legends Robbie Fowler and Steve McManaman were also in attendance sharing their views on a variety of topics, but The Liverpool Offside was able to hear the thoughts of Pele on the game and a player who could shape its outcome.
"Coutinho has a great future," Pele told The Liverpool Offside when asked about the Liverpool number ten's prospects in the game. "He's a good player and I think he's going to get nice experience playing in Europe, because a lot of top players play in Europe to become more experienced. But it's too early to talk about the national team but he has the talent on the ball to play for the national team."
The 74-year-old also expressed his desire to see a good game between Liverpool and Manchester United, but Pele has a mutual business partner with Liverpool so maybe it's best that he doesn't take a neutral position on Sunday. However, many football fans across the world with no allegiances to either club would probably agree with his stance.
"In Brazil, we find the games (between Liverpool and Manchester United) are big and it should be a nice game," Pele enthused. "It doesn't matter who's going to win; it's going to be a great match."
Unfortunately the secrets to Pele's full head of hair and his favourite sandwiches weren't discovered, but his presence on Sunday adds more glamour to what looks to be one of the biggest games of the season. Victory for either side could be the vital ingredient in a push for a place in the top four.