6 moving tributes to the Hillsborough 96 over the years


The Hillsborough tragedy unfolded during Liverpool's FA Cup semi-final tie against Nottingham Forest on April 15, 1989.

Ninety-six Liverpool fans lost their lives as thousands of fans were crushed on Sheffield Wednesday's Leppings Lane terrace.

In the years that followed, as family members sought justice for the 96, Liverpool Football Club was at the heart of tributes and memorials to those who lost their lives.

1. When all games started seven minutes late

The clock at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough ground

As a mark of respect in 2014, for the 25th anniversary of the disaster, games across the country started late on the weekend of April 11 to 14.

In the FA Cup, the Premier League, Football League and Football Conference the kick-off was delayed until after people had observed a minute's silence from six minutes past the hour.

The 1989 match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest was ended six minutes after kick-off.

2. City rivalries were put aside

A post unveiled as Everton played local rivals Liverpool reading 'Solidarity has no colours'

"You should never class it as a one-football-club tragedy," Jamie Carragher told the Daily Mail in 2014. "It affected the whole city, as Evertonians had family, friends and work colleagues at Hillsborough. The rivalry between the clubs is intense but, for this particular matter, the bond is unbreakable."

A young Everton and Liverpool fan pay tribute to the 96 people who died in the Hillsborough tragedy

3. Steven Gerrard wore a tribute black armband even though he was playing for LA Galaxy

While playing for the Galaxy, Gerrard marked the 27th anniversary by wearing a black armband for his new team's game against Houston Dynamo.

At the time, Gerrard said: "It was a very emotional night for me tonight with the Hillsborough memorial back home. I asked the referee if I could wear an armband to salute everyone back home and pay my respects."

4. Liverpool still doesn't play on April 15 - the anniversary of the disaster

Xabi Alonson playing for Liverpool

In 2012, when Liverpool booked a place in the FA Cup semi-final, Liverpool's then manager Kenny Dalglish repeated that the Reds would not play on April 15.

The club have always had special dispensation to avoid matches on the anniversary and it was understood the club contacted the FA to remind them of the significance of that date, PA Sport reported at the time.

Dalglish said in 2012: "We won't play on the 15th. The FA and Uefa have always been exemplary and very supportive, and that's great credit to them. I don't think it's even worth a line in a paper that we might play on the 15th because we won't.

"We've never played on the 15th before, have we? So there you are. Why would they change now?"

5. When 96 seats were left vacant, save for Liverpool scarves

96 seats left empty save for Liverpool scarves at Wembley Stadium

In 2014, when Wigan Athletic faced Arsenal in the FA Cup semi final at Wembley, 96 seats were left empty. Empty that is, apart from the Liverpool scarves draped over the chairs in tribute to those who lost their lives at Hillsborough.

6. Doves were released

Doves are released from the pitch during the Hillsborough 27th Anniversary Memorial Service at Anfield, Liverpool

At the final Hillsborough memorial, earlier this year, 96 white doves were released before a rendition of Liverpool's club anthem, You'll Never Walk Alone, accompanied by The Salvation Army Band.