Evertonians have been paying tribute to Adam Cunliffe – a lifelong fan and a lad loved by many.

He was a regular writer for ToffeeWeb and wrote this article called ‘Why I love Everton’. And the title says it all.

It was all about how proud he was to be an Evertonian and judging by the response to the heartbreaking news on Twitter, a fan Everton should have been proud to have supporting their team.

His article is below:

Why I love Everton

By Adam Cunliffe :  20/01/2009 :

The title says it all really. Last night epitomised why I love Everton as much as I do. The pride, passion and determination that was on show last night truly made me proud to be and Evertonian.

I love Everton for many different reasons. It?s a tradition thing mostly, all of my family (well my Dad?s half anyway) have supported the men in Royal Blue and long will they continue to do so. But alongside this is the loyalty that surrounds the club from the management, to the players and the fans. As a club we aren?t deluded about who we are and what we can realistically expect to achieve. We?ve witnessed the great eras of the 80s and the despair of the late 90s but yet we can still hold our heads up high and say we are Evertonians now and ?till the end.

One of my first ever heroes in a blue shirt was Nicky Barmby. He and Duncan Ferguson were the only shining lights I had whilst growing up as a young blue surrounded by Liverpool fans in primary school who were always going on about how they were going to win this and how they were going to win that. It was hard for me to keep supporting Everton at that age but my Dad said to me how our time will come one day and I think I?ve waited about 10 years but I now believe that this is our time.

Every player last night played out of their skin. Every one of them worked their balls off for the cause and we got no less than we deserved. The fans were awesome. At home watching it on Setanta I noticed the atmosphere at Anfield was dead except for 3,000 travelling Evertonians who sang their hearts out all game. Every time a verse of ?Royal Blue Mersey? or ?If You Know Your History? came out of the speakers me and my Dad both looked at each other and we just knew that Everton were simply the greatest team in the world.

No other club in the world has the same support as we do; away or at home the Evertonians always do the club proud and yesterday, as me and my Dad danced around the front room as Cahill?s header went in, we felt as though we were there. We felt a part of what was happening.

As soon as Gerrard’s goal went in and he did his slide towards the Kop end I felt like crying. I hate that cretin Gerrard with a passion. Everything he stands for, everything he does is simply horrid and how can any Liverpool fan say that the game against Everton is not as big as the United game when they were all going mad? The silence in our front room was awful, and it remained until the last 10 minutes or so when we started going forward more and when Liverpool realised the game wasn’t over.

Jagielka was a rock in defence as he always is. He has the Everton attitude. He doesn’t give a shit about who he?s playing he?ll just clean out whoever?s in front of him until he gets the ball. Some of his blocks where simply outstanding and his tackle on ladyboy Torres was outstanding. Also, I think last night Baines finally came of age. He played out of his skin down that left flank and threw himself in front of the ball, much like the aforementioned Jagielka, without a thought about if he might get hurt.

Then when Anichebe got fouled by the handsome chap that is Benayoun you just kind of knew that this was it. In every game, the team who is behind always gets one chance in the last 10 minutes of the game, guaranteed and this was ours. Then, when Cahill scored, I’ve never celebrated as much in my life.

I hate Liverpool with such a passion, so even though we never won it felt like a victory because Liverpool weren’t top of the league and then to see the look on that bastard Gerrard’s face when Cahill, a real fan of the team he plays for, scored was fucking price less. And then it just got better when Rafa ?You want sangria?? Benitez gave his interview. His face was like a slapped arse and long may it continue to be so.

However, the best part about it all was today in school. I don’t get many chances to rub it in to all my red mates but today I didn’t stop. Of course I came in with my Everton scarf to piss them all of and then me and my mate Adam (the lucky bugger’s got a ticket for the FA Cup game) burst into a rendition of ?Your gunna win Fuck All? which annoyed them even more. God I love being an Evertonian.

Once I’d got my money off Nathan (I bet him his lunch money we wouldn’t lose), we carried on with Kyle who just happened to have a season ticket in the upper Annie Road. And his response, you couldn’t make this shit up seriously, he said “Torres would’ve easily scored if he’d have been match fit?. I laughed so hard my belly hurt.

Though it?s that kind of response that kind of sums Liverpool up. I couldn?t help but laugh at how stupid them cretins really are when they sang the whole ‘Fuck off too Kirkby, the city’s all ours? when their best player who scored their only goal and what they thought would be the winning goal is from Knowsley, the same metropolitan borough which Kirkby is in. Are they really so damn thick?

I?ll be eternally grateful to Cahill after last night, not just for making this 14-year-old lad’s day at school the best in a long time. As I’m sure to many younger Evertonians, he and Mikel Arteta are the same symbols of hope that I had with Barmby and Ferguson. But not only that, Cahill actually loves Everton in the same way Big Dunc did. He is one of us and that?s why we all love him.

I still get asked questions along the lines of Why do you support Everton when they’re obviously shite?? and I think last night was the perfect answer. We don’t win much, our stadium’s dire, our team is worth the same as Torres and we simply haven’t got a pot to piss in. But it’s games like that which make me so happy to love Everton. The bad results only make the good ones feel so much better, especially when it?s against that shower who think they have a God-given right to win everything.

The loyalty, commitment, pride and passion the whole team showed last night is simply the reason why I love Everton Football Club.

About The Author

Becki Cookson

LJMU Journalism graduate & aspiring sports journalist Writer for GrandOldTeam