The Third Leader: Walk on

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Suddenly, no chance of walking alone. If there's one thing the Great British Public loves more than an international sporting triumph, it's an international sporting triumph by an underdog. Not that anyone connected with Liverpool - and there are more of them now, somehow - ever saw it quite like that; but then, as we know, Liverpudlians have a remarkable talent for bracing, independent thought.

Suddenly, no chance of walking alone. If there's one thing the Great British Public loves more than an international sporting triumph, it's an international sporting triumph by an underdog. Not that anyone connected with Liverpool - and there are more of them now, somehow - ever saw it quite like that; but then, as we know, Liverpudlians have a remarkable talent for bracing, independent thought.

I should declare an interest: I was born in Liverpool, but removed shortly afterwards to a 12-mile distance, the better to observe this remarkable city, a port and apart, a place of comings and goings of people and influences, of wits and living on them, all played out on a stage with some of the grandest buildings anywhere - world heritage status, thank you - as a backdrop. No wonder Donizetti set an opera there. He did.

So, to come back from the dead and three goals is less unexpected, rather another legend to go with the larger comeback symbolised by the upcoming coronation as European Capital of Culture.

There were other potent Scouse symbols in Istanbul, starting with the irrepressible pre-match confidence alongside the T-shirts acclaiming Jamie Carragher as Carradona. And, on the pitch, Gerrard fighting back and Carragher telling his keeper to do the off-putting stuff pioneered by Bruce Grobbelaar, an adopted Scouser of the scandalously stereotypical sort we don't want to discuss today, thank you.

But you are waiting for The Third Leader Department's ruling on the title defence business. Of course they should be let back in: but it is time to reveal another interest: some of us are Evertonians.

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