Tommy Makinson relishing return to Anfield for Magic Weekend
Last Updated: 20/05/19 4:23pm
Tommy Makinson is looking forward to heading back to Anfield, where last year he scored a hat-trick to help England to a series win over New Zealand.
All 12 Super League teams head to Liverpool this weekend for Magic Weekend, and while it will be a first time at Anfield for some, St Helens' Makinson has experience of playing at the home of last season's Premier League runners-up.
England won 20-14 in early November to secure a hard-fought series against New Zealand, and the experience has left an impression on Makinson.
"It's a place I'll never forget," said the 27-year-old at the Magic Weekend media day. "Playing for England here last year and wrapping the series up, it was a special day for me and my family.
"If you could picture your day at Anfield going well, that just blew it out of proportion. Having all my family here, being so close - obviously from St Helens - and scoring three at the Kop end was always nice.
"That's a big one, being a Manchester United fan. But coming back here, it's more of an arena this than a stadium.
"You see the kind of atmosphere that gets created in these iconic grounds. Bringing rugby here this weekend is going to be amazing, and I really appeal to all those family and friends to come round and watch because it will be a great event."
All six games of Magic Weekend are live on Sky Sports, and Makinson is expecting plenty of noise from those who make it to Anfield.
"You saw that England game, how passionate the fans were; there was so many people here," he said.
"As far as stadiums go, it just creates that extra bit. It's just history.
"Hopefully we can create that type of atmosphere and get everyone down and really enjoy the weekend, it will go a long way to helping the lads perform their best."
Blake Austin is a fan of Liverpool, and says the title race split some of the Warrington squad members.
"For any fan, or anyone coming from Australia, to spend some time in stadiums like these, let along play in it - it's going to be something special.
"We've got a healthy rivalry at the Wolves; there's a lot of Man City fans and a few Reds as well so it makes for a good bit of banter."
The Wolves man revealed his wife and son became Manchester City fans after watching a game at the Etihad, and took a cheeky swipe at the champions.
"At the Wolves we get access to a lot more City games. [Our family] got some free tickets when we came over last year - obviously City give away a lot of tickets because they struggle to fill their stadium!
"We went along to a game and my son fell in love with the atmosphere and the blue shirts and the players they have.
"It would have been great to share a love for the same team, but it's also special to support rival teams as well and we're enjoying it."
Hull FC's Danny Houghton is also a Liverpool fan, and said he is looking forward to playing in their "iconic" stadium.
"Pretty special, especially as a kid," Houghton said of his relationship with the club. "My dad used to bring me all the time to watch them play.
"I've not been for a couple of years or so, but when I do come it always leaves a really good memory in my mind. I'm looking forward to sampling it for myself now.
"It's going to be pretty special. As a sportsman you want to play at the iconic stadiums, and to play at something as special as this is going to be great."