For many of us, the parade following the loss and horrific scenes in Paris was a much-needed positive note to end the season with — for the players as well as for the fans.
The captain, Jordan Henderson, was floored by the response after being uncertain how many would come out:
“It’s incredible! We weren’t quite sure what to expect when we came on the bus. Obviously we are disappointed with last night and how the season ended, but overall the lads have given everything and this is what it means to the fans. It’s the least we can do to say thank you to them for what they’ve given us this season, supporting us across the country and across Europe, so we want to say thank you and it means a lot to the lads.”
Andy Robertson was his usual direct self in his discussion of the parade and what it all meant:
“To be honest with you I woke up this morning in a terrible mood, everyone did. Obviously we were so disappointed with what happened last night, of course we are, but the minute you get on this bus you realize the best fans in the world have come out. It’s great for all of us and it will give us a nice ending to a really tough season. We move on to next season but from this experience we will get we’ll be ready to get back into it.
“We want to win the big titles and when you don’t do that you worry about how you will be received, what will go on and how many people [will turn up], so of course that was in the back of our minds. But hang on, what a turnout from the best fans in the world. They give us something to be happy about and to represent them, for all of us, is the biggest honor.
“We have to show the appreciation to them. It’s been a long, tough season for us and also for them as well: how far they have travelled, how much money they have spent traveling, every game. Sixty-three games, home and away sold out. You kind of appreciate them more and it’s more just a thank you to them more than anything.”
Divock Origi, who is off to Italy, reflected on his last parade with Liverpool:
“Honestly, it’s unbelievable. It’s been a special season, we fought on every front all season and now being here again – it’s only in Liverpool you would see this, even after a defeat, even after the final. I still feel pain from the final but overall I am feeling grateful and happy and I’m enjoying it obviously.
“[I’ll miss the boys] a lot, a lot. It’s been eight years, I’ve seen a lot of guys, the staff, the fans, and like I said I think our purpose is done and that helps to put it in good perspective as well. I feel like we are in good hands, there is still so much more to come from this team.”
Trent Alexander-Arnold soaked it all in:
“It was hard to gauge how this was going to go today but I think the fans here, it’s been outstanding and what an amazing turnout. You never get used to winning trophies. This feeling is amazing, to come out and celebrate with the fans, our families, our friends, it’s amazing. We can’t get complacent and we have to celebrate these moments because you never know, we might not win a trophy again. But we are excited about today.”
Diogo Jota and Ibrahima Konaté experienced their first parades. The frenchman was precise in his reaction:
“It’s unbelievable, it’s crazy, I never saw this in my life! I don’t want to talk too much because I want to enjoy it now!”
Jota put the parade in perspective for his future at Liverpool:
“It’s amazing, to be honest. I was not expecting this much. Of course after the defeat yesterday it feels sad but it’s impossible to be sad at this moment when we have all these people cheering for you and for the team. It’s a sad moment for us what happened last night, but if you can think of all the season – four defeats, two trophies, it’s an amazing season. Now we can celebrate, although it’s hard because of last night. This season was an outstanding one, we did a great job. But I think about improvement and if we can do it next season it will be great.”
Manager Matt Beard, whose Liverpool Women’s side paraded their league winner’s trophy, was delighted with the experience:
“A great occasion, a great day. I’m delighted with what we have achieved this year… it’s like a family and that is why we have had the success we have had. It’s unbelievable [in Liverpool], I say it all the time that I have never worked anywhere like it.”
Taylor Hinds echoed his sentiments, happy to be a part of the event:
“It’s unreal, the fans are amazing and to be a part of the men’s celebrations and to celebrate ourselves as well is just amazing. You can hear it, you can see it, it’s just so good to be here.”
Finally, Pep Lijnders connected the special sense of the parade with the club’s underlying identity:
“It’s insane, no? We see the Scouse soul today, there’s something bigger than us and the people are proud. When you lose, I think that’s the next level. What a season, hey. This is the best remedy, to see your family after the game immediately if you lose and see all the fans with this pride – that’s the best remedy for losing a game like that. Overall, we just have to be proud and that’s the feeling we have; the feeling that we can continue with this team to work overrules all the feelings of losing.
“We have to cherish these moments because being a Liverpool supporter in this moment in this era, with this team, with so much joy in their feet, so much passion, we have to shout as loud as we can. Enjoy it before it will end.”