As long as Liverpool FC want me, I still want to go on
Liverpool FC matchday announcer George Sephton talks to Steve Graves about his 42 years as the voice of Anfield
TO generations of Liverpool FC fans George Sephton has been an essential part of the matchday experience.
As one of few remaining links to the Liverpool’s 1970s and 80s golden age George has come to form part of the club’s fabric.
Players, managers and even owners have come and gone but the 67-year-old has been the voice of Anfield for nearly 42 years.
Missing just one game – for his son’s wedding – over that period his distinctive tones have heralded thousands of goals and substitutions – as well as all-important updates on tunnel closures and cars left parked inconsiderately on Sleepers Hill.
We meet the morning after Liverpool’s spirited but ultimately fruitless bid to turn round a 2-0 first-leg deficit in the Europa League clash with Zenit St Petersburg.
While the 3-1 win on the night wasn’t quite enough to see the Reds through the atmosphere was a boost to anyone whose faith in the Anfield crowd might be waning.
Not that George had much chance to take it all in – as he admits the combination of plate glass surrounding him and the pressure of the job in hand can often prove an obstacle.
He said: “A lot of people told me afterwards that it was a good one. It is hard for me to tell from where I’m stationed and with everything else going on but when it is particularly loud it comes through.
“Those are the nights Anfield comes alive.”
Cynics might suggest the lack of noise in George’s booth above the Anfield scoreboard is as much about the frequent hush around the ground as the problems posed by his station.
He said: “It has definitely changed. Those occasions are rarer than they used to be.
“We have a big problem with the atmosphere now because people know they are going to get in and have a seat waiting for them, not having to get buffeted and battered to find a spot like in the old days.
“When I used to go and watch we had to get there early to get in and get a ‘spec’.
“I was locked out of Anfield more than once and it was tough to be a fan back then.”