Lee Trundle column: Swansea City come first — then it's the Liverpool clubs
SWANSEA City are definitely my team — but I still have a soft spot for both Liverpool clubs.
Before I fell in love with Swansea, I was an Everton fan and I used to support Liverpool before that.
In my home city, just about everyone is either one or the other and it is not uncommon to have families split on Merseyside derby day.
That's what it was like in my house, and I can remember for the 1986 cup final, contested between the sides, we painted our window half blue and half red.
That's what people did in Huyton, where I'm from.
There also used to be street parties. People would take their dining tables outside and everyone would sit down together.
It's a very friendly rivalry — people will often watch the game with someone who supports the other side.
Often people have a soft spot for the other team — and I'm no different.
Even though I'm more of an Everton fan, I would love to see Steven Gerrard lift the Premier League championship trophy this season.
Gerrard is a class act.
For me, it's not going too far to describe him as perhaps the best player Liverpool have ever had.
He has been at the top with Liverpool for 15 years, won more than 100 England caps, and still has exceptional quality.
It is not just his incredible passing, thumping shot, tireless work-rate and inspirational example that I find so impressive, it is his influence off the pitch.
Steven is Liverpool's leader in any situation, he is the man people follow, commanding a huge amount of respect and influence in the dressing room and during a match.
The Liverpool legend was always destined for greatness.
I should know because he's also from Huyton and used to live just five minutes away from my house.
Steven is a few years younger than me so we never played in the same team, but I soon knew all about him — everyone did.
People always said he was going to make the Liverpool first team, and he got there aged just 18.
When I'm back home, occasionally I'll bump into Steven and he's always been a really nice guy.
Huyton has long been renowned for producing great footballers, with the likes of Peter Reid, Joey Barton, Tony Hibbert, Callum McManaman, Clint Hill and Steven's cousin Anthony others from the area who have gone on to play professionally.
It gives me great pride to see Steven achieve what he has, and I would love him to cap his career by clinching a top-flight title.
That's not to say I want Liverpool to win at the Liberty on Monday, though.
Sadly I don't think Liverpool will win the championship they are so desperate for this season.
Brendan Rodgers's side have started the season really well, surging to the top of the table after three straight wins, one of which came against Manchester United.
But I still don't think they have the quality to compete with the big three of United, Manchester City and Chelsea.
They could finish fourth, and though supporters may not like to admit it after such a great first month, that would be a fantastic achievement.
One man Swansea will have to keep a very close eye on is Daniel Sturridge.
He has been in excellent form this season and is a player I rate very highly indeed.
Rodgers did really well to bring him to Anfield and Sturridge is repaying the manager's faith.
Sturridge has netted five times in four games so far and his goal against Aston Villa was particularly special.