Meet some heroes: Cally on Bold Street, Pepe at Liverpool One
Liverpool legend Ian Callaghan played for Liverpool 857 times, scoring 68 times. Current Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina has played 324 times for the Reds. This week the duo will be signing books at two separate events a quarter of a mile apart on the same evening.
Having made his debut six days after his eighteenth birthday in 1960, Callaghan (or ‘Cally’ to give him the name he’s known best by) made his final appearance on a Liverpool team sheet as an unused sub 18 years later as Liverpool picked up their second European Cup at Wembley. He was booked just once in his whole career and was never sent off; a gentleman on and off the pitch and one of the few thoroughly worthy of the “legend” tag.
Current Liverpool goalkeeper Reina (or ‘Pepe’ to give him the name he’s known best by) has appeared 232 times in the league since being signed from Villareal by Rafael Benitez in 2005. Undoubtedly the most important Reds signing in many years he continues to make a difference that wins matches, even as recently as Sunday in the Reds’ 2-1 win at Chelsea. He won an FA Cup winners medal at the end of his first season and a Champions League runners-up medal at the end of his second before the impact of the turbulent ownership situation sent the club veering off course. Without that turbulence it’s likely he’d have more medals to put alongside the winners medals he got for Spain from the 2008 European Championships and 2010 World Cup.
Two branches of Waterstones in Liverpool are hosting the book signings, on Thursday night, and if you time it right you should be able to get to both events.
Pepe will be in Waterstones in Liverpool One from 5pm, signing copies of his autobiography, Cally will be the short walk up the road in Waterstones on Bold Street from 6pm, signing copies of ‘Liverpool: The Complete Record’.
The LFC Complete Record book really does live up to its name, with details of every game Liverpool have played since the club’s formation in 1892. Ian Callaghan’s name has featured on more teamsheets than any other Liverpool player in a Reds career that began with Bill Shankly and his early efforts to bring glory back to Anfield and ended as Liverpool began their European dominance under Bob Paisley. The book is one that all Liverpool fans need to have in their collection; having Ian Callaghan’s signature on it would make it that bit more special.
The publishers have also arranged for a free limited edition print of Steven Gerrard, by artist Zoran Lucic (part of his series of football portraits, Sucker For Soccer) to be given out with each copy of LFC The Complete Record bought on the night.
Although many people argue that footballers bring out their autobiographies too early these days there aren’t many players with as much of a story to tell as Pepe Reina.
As a goalkeeper, 29-year-old Reina is nowhere near the end of his career yet but it was clear he already had more than enough material with which to fill a book. With the assistance of The Times’ Tony Barrett that material has been turned into a compelling read and gives Pepe the chance to discuss his memories of his time as Barcelona’s teenage keeper and his time at Villareal as well as the good and bad times at Anfield, with his side of the story from the dark days under the previous owners given an airing too.
If you can’t make one or both event you can still buy the books online from Waterstones:
Liverpool: The Complete History by Arnie Baldursson and Gudmundur Magnusson.
Pepe – My Autobiography by Pepe Reina.