InterviewWhy Anfield means so much to Missy Bo Kearns

Published 23rd September 2022
By Steve Hunter

When Liverpool FC Women step out to face Everton at Anfield in the Barclays Women's Super League on Sunday, there will be no-one prouder than Missy Bo Kearns.

The local midfield maestro, as the fans call her, remained on the bench for the November 2019 meeting with the Blues in front of the Kop, which the away side won 1-0.

But now a regular starter under Matt Beard, the Scouser is relishing the chance to play at her beloved Anfield with the red shirt on.

LFC Women got their season off to the perfect start last weekend when they came from behind to beat reigning champions Chelsea 2-1 at Prenton Park.

Beard’s team now have this special opportunity to play in front of the Kop in a Merseyside derby, with kick-off set for 6.45pm BST.

Read on as Kearns tells us of her affection for LFC and hopes for Sunday’s encounter…

  • Get your tickets to see LFC Women v Everton at Anfield here, with tickets starting at just £1 for kids

On what Anfield means to her…

Being a Liverpool fan, coming to Anfield and coming to watch all of the games, this is a special place. I know people who don’t support Liverpool who say how much of a good atmosphere there is and how big an impact the stadium has on football fans. Being a local girl and supporting this team from a young age, I take it for granted how lucky I am. It’s the team I support and it’s a place I used to love coming here as a kid, and I still love coming to the place now.

On the famous Anfield atmosphere…

When it’s full, the atmosphere is amazing. It helps the momentum when the team are playing. I think it has a big impact on the games. The stadium is getting bigger and bigger, we are getting a new stand for the Anfield Road and more fans will be able to come along. Anfield is a highlight of the city.

Missy on Merseyside derby: 'We're ready to put on a show'

On some of her favourite Anfield memories so far…

I first went to Anfield when I was five or six, we had season tickets. I was fortunate enough to go to most home games. It’s an unreal experience. Some people aren’t lucky enough to even go to one game at Anfield a year and I’ve done it since I was a kid and [am] still doing it now. I love every single minute of it and I’ve watched Champions League games, Premier League games, I’ve watched the good times, I’ve also watched the bad times. If you are a fan, you’re a fan. You just love coming to every game and enjoying the moment.

On whether she has dreamed of playing for Liverpool in front of the Kop…

Yes, growing up I wanted to be Steven Gerrard! I wanted to play on the pitch and now for that dream [to be] about to come true on Sunday, it’s going to be unbelievable. When we played here in 2019, I was on the bench, I was young and I didn’t get on. I think I’ve matured since then as a player and as a person and I’ve come a long way. Hopefully I can have an impact on Sunday and get to make my debut at Anfield.

On her previous appearance on the hallowed turf…

I was a mascot against Chelsea in the Champions League. I wasn’t well but I still had this opportunity on the night. My mum asked me if I still wanted to go and I was like, ‘Yeah, yeah!’ The stadium was packed. We got the coach here and I can still remember I still wasn’t myself and my mum had given me water and sweets to liven myself up! I then got told I was walking out with Martin Skrtel but I had to put a Chelsea kit on! I realised you had to wear the opposition’s kit to walk out with the Liverpool players, so I was like, ‘Alright, I’ll do it!’ When we walked out it was like, ‘Oh my days!’ I couldn’t believe it and that’s what the players must feel every single week. When You’ll Never Walk Alone was playing and you are stood on that pitch, you just took it all in and hearing everyone singing it was just unbelievable. I’ve still got the Chelsea kit I wore that night and got all the pictures.

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On Sunday’s meeting with Everton…

I can’t wait. It’s going to be great. The girls are ready. I’m really excited. I hope we can get just as good or an even better crowd than the last time we played at Anfield. The women’s game since then has come on miles, like we saw in the Euros when the stadiums were being filled out. That’s going to have an impact on our games this season and I think for most games it’s going to be a much higher attendance than it was last season. It’s a great opportunity to play at the main stadium, it’s a great day out and for us it’s something you can’t see you doing every single week. You’ve just got to make the most of it when the time comes.

On what she remembers thinking when the news was announced the WSL derby was going to be at Anfield…

I think I was on holiday but the first thing I remember doing was telling all of my family about it, ‘We are playing at Anfield!’ Everyone is talking about it and I think it’s going to be an unbelievable experience. There will be loads of kids here, it’s live on Sky. It’s maybe an opportunity for families who can’t get tickets to watch the men’s team here to come and watch us.

On how special a fixture the Merseyside derby is…

I’ve played in derbies since I was eight and all the way up the age groups, and nothing has changed, the meaning of them. It’s the same as when I played Everton when I was eight to playing in the first team now. We want to win. They are hard games. Sometimes they are end to end and other times they are aggressive and full of emotion. Everton will have players who support them, like I support Liverpool, and they will feel like I feel but on the other end of the stick. I made my first start for the first team against Everton at Walton Hall Park but we lost. I think it’s going to be a tough game and there is pressure because we are playing at Anfield but we’ve just got to thrive off that. We’ve got a good enough team and the girls are all in a good place. We are ready to put on a show.

Published 23rd September 2022