Aldridge: Ban vile chanters for life
Liverpool legend John Aldridge has called for 'supporters' who taunt vile chants from the stands to be identified and banned from football for good.
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson led the calls for the hostilities that have long existed between his club and Liverpool to come to an end ahead of Sunday's clash at Anfield, when the innocent victims on the Hillsborough tragedy were to be remembered.
Yet Aldridge believes the truce between the two rivals should not be a temporary case fire, as he is calling on the game's authorities to use the mood of reconciliation as a force for permanent good.
"Our sport in 2012 has no place for idiots who turn up at a game and taunt the Liverpool fans who perished at Hillsborough or the wonderful Manchester United team that was decimated at a Munich airfield back in 1958," he told Ireland's Sunday World newspaper
"So if any United fan decides he wants to turn up at Anfield and sing a song suggesting Scousers were to blame for Hillsborough or if any Liverpool fans chant abuse about United's darkest hour, the people sat in the seats next to them in the stands should tell them to shut their ugly mouths.
"After that, the authorities should nail them, take their season tickets away and make sure these imbeciles don't soil the stands of a football ground for a long, long time. A zero tolerance policy is the way forward on this issue.
"CCTV cameras are positioned all over Premier League grounds and it wouldn't be too hard to pick out the cretins and make sure they are banned from every ground in England. If we did that, this unacceptable minority would be eradicated very quickly.
"In every walk of life, you are going to get the fools who don't fit in with the majority and football has a small pocket of people who do not seem to be in tune with life on this planet, so take him out of football and tell him to go and annoy someone else."
Aldridge insists he does not want to see the intense rivalry between Liverpool and United diluted beyond recognition, but he is convinced more cordial relations between the clubs would be healthy for the game.
"The day we see United and Liverpool fans holding hands and going to match together is the day we know this sport has gone too touchy feely for its own good and there is a danger that the sport is going that way with working class fans are being priced out of the game," he adds.
"I want to see passionate games between teams who have ripped into each other time and again down the years and so long as all the animosity is channelled in the right direction, no one will have any problem with it."