SEVEN months ago, former Zimbabwe goalkeeper, Bruce Grobbelaar, told the world he had lifted the curse, which had been haunting Liverpool’s title challenges for more than a quarter-of-a-century.
The Jungleman said he had urinated at the Anfield goal posts.
This was after the Reds moved 10 points clear, at the top of the Premier League, thanks to a double from Egyptian superstar, Mohamed Salah, in a 2-0 home victory.
A few months later, Watford would be the only club, so far, to beat Liverpool, with a stunning 3-0 victory.
The rest of the challengers, including Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United, have simply been swept away.
“I had a testimonial in 1992 and I was sponsored by Zambezi Lager and they sent a witchdoctor with the lager,” Grobbelaar told BT Sport before their coverage of the Watford clash, in December last year.
“He went around on the posts and put his goat’s tail, put his water on the posts of both sides, got the microphone and said, ‘If you don’t have the jungleman Bruce Grobbelaar here, you won’t win the title’.
“Of course, I went back to South Africa, went to Canada, came back. Remember when Stevie G, he slipped? One night game I went down to the Kop end, I peed on the posts.
“That breaks the spell. I got thrown out. I didn’t do the Anfield Road and we finished second.”
Grobbelaar claimed he put things right before the start of this campaign which ended with the Reds winning their first league title in 30 years on Thursday night.
“Last season I played in a corporate game here, we were in the dressing room and the guy said ‘you have to do the business today’,” he said.
“I said, ‘okay’. I took a water bottle, poured the water out, peed in the bottle, came back.
“First-half at the Kop end, I splashed it all over the posts. Second-half, I came down to the Anfield Road end and splashed it all over the posts. End of last season.”
Grobbelaar was part of the last Liverpool players to win the league championship in 1990.
Now, the 62-year-old, who is based in Canada, but has secured a job in Europe, told The Saturday Herald he is relieved the lengthy wait for a league title was now over.
“It’s been a long time coming and I am ecstatic for Jurgen Klopp and the LFC Family. We now are the Champions and deservedly so,’’ he said.
“Most dominant team for this season and for many more.’’
Grobbelaar, who achieved legendary status at Liverpool, yesterday revisited his story about the curse which had allegedly been cast on the Reds.
“Well, you know as well as I do that some Africans believe in the Witch Doctor! I did what we were told in the 70’s, playing for Salisbury Callies and Matabeleland Highlanders to do if you think the Witch Doctor has done something,’’ he said.
“I did it and, to date we haven’t lost at Anfield yet this season.’’
Grobbelaar was part of the all-conquering Liverpool team of the ’80s, winning six league championships with the side and one European Cup.
There were also a dozen other trophies won during that adventure.
This makes him one of the most decorated players in the club’s history.
Liverpool were last champions of England when they won the old First Division title in 1989-90 and, until Thursday night, had never won the rebranded Premiership title.
Grobbelaar said he always believed in the charm possessed by Klopp, who arrived at the club in 2016, amid a range of mixed emotions from the club’s faithful.
The German then promised that it was not going to be an overnight journey to make Liverpool winners again.
To his credit, he has lived up to his word with his heavy-metal type of football.
Liverpool are now the English, European and World Champions.
“This is what our players needed for them to be called champions,” Grobbelaar told The Saturday Herald.
“Jurgen Klopp told everyone, four years ago, that we would win a trophy.
“Well, we have won four and he won’t stop. He demands the players to better themselves each time they go out on the field! We go again, and this means more, it’s something that has been drummed into us at Anfield.
“Good leadership was lacking. We have that manager right now to propel us to another level.
“He bought a player in (Virgil) van Dijk who demands everyone around him to play better and he bought one of the best keepers in the world. To the many Liverpool fans, in my homeland Zimbabwe, continue to support the club, but more so, the Warriors whom I hope to dance with one more time before I leave this planet!”
Just as he was an important member of the 1980s team, Grobbelaar believes the influence of African players, Sadio Mane of Senegal and Mohamed Salah of Egypt, has been priceless in Liverpool’s quest for glory.
They also have Guinean Naby Keita, who has played 11 league games this campaign.
“We have to say that Africa gets a mention as well, in Mane and, Salah who have been brilliant since they arrived at LFC!” he said.
Grobbelaar was also full of praise for club captain, Jordan Henderson.
“Absolutely, our captain has got to be one of the candidates for the best Player of the Season. Under Klopp, his performance has been huge.”-herald