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LISA MULLINS: I'm Lisa Mullins and this is The World. We took a ferry �cross the Mersey to reach the answer to our Geo Quiz today. The answer is the city of Liverpool, England, home of the once glorious Liverpool Football Club. That's the soccer team that Red Sox owner John Henry is trying to buy. The team is currently owned by another couple of Yanks, Tom Hicks and George Gillett, and they're not too popular with the fans, who accuse them of loading the team with debts instead of trophies. Marc Gaier is a reporter with BBC Radio Merseyside, and he's been a Liverpool soccer fan pretty much since birth. So what are people saying when they heard the news first that John Henry is going to be taking over the team? What was the scuttlebutt? What were people saying?

MARC GAIER: Well, I have to say, who are the Boston Red Sox? Now you might find that strange and I consider myself a member of the Red Sox nation, but baseball is not a big sport in England. So people don't know enough about the Boston Red Sox and they certainly don't know enough about John Henry, so, as I say, they're welcoming the fact that's somebody's interested, but I think the story that we're looking at now, and there are two parts to it, one is from our perspective, who is John Henry and how much money is he worth? And the other question, you might find this a bit amusing, is nobody actually knows at the moment who owns Liverpool Football Club. Whether the board can make the decision or the actual owners, or whether the owners have divested this decision to the board and it's going to court next week.

MULLINS: It's going to court next week. So that's the environment that John Henry is stepping into. By the way, when you say that nobody really knows much about John Henry and the Boston Red Sox, you Marc Gaier, are the exception to that, aren't you?

GAIER: Yeah, I have relatives in the Boston area and so I've been over a few times and I have been to Fenway Park. I have seen Carl Yastrzemski play if that counts for anything.

MULLINS: That was my favorite, number eight.

GAIER: Yeah, and I remember he even had the Ford franchise in [SOUNDS LIKE] Lynn, opposite my cousin's lumber yard. That's how much I remember from the 1970s. So, I know who the Red Sox are. It resonates with me. But I've got to say for most people in the UK, nobody has a clue.

MULLINS: Marc, do you know the theme song at Fenway Park?

GAIER: Is it Neil Diamond?

MULLINS: Yeah. You want to give us a few bars? Cause I'm going to ask you about the Liverpool song then.

GAIER: Well, I can get � I have sung along to Neil Diamond at Fenway Park. Fortunately, the other 35,000 or so voices have drowned me out, and Sweet Caroline I think you want me to sing?


GAIER: No way. The song they sing at Liverpool is, believe it or not, is You'll Never Walk Alone, originally from the musical Carousel, but was recorded as a single by one of the Mersey Beat bands you may have heard of, Gerry and the Pacemakers. And it is sung by Liverpool fans before every game.

MULLINS: Including you?

GAIER: I try my best. And the fans sing it and they wave � they sort of hold their scarves above their heads, so it's a sea of red and white, those are the team colors. They would also sing it, say, at the end of a big match if they were winning, but it's usually the rallying song before the match. When you walk through a storm, hold your head up high, and I suppose that's what you always have to do in life.

MULLINS: Okay, Marc.


MULLINS: I can tell. I'm not even going to ask again. Marc Gaier, thank you so much. Really nice to talk to you. Marc Gaier, reporter with BBC Radio Merseyside, and a fan of not only the Liverpool football or soccer team, but also the Boston Red Sox. Thank you, Marc.

GAIER: Thank you very much.