They said, Bruce, can you help us? BBC News

The Hillsborough disaster on 15 April 1989 claimed the lives of 96 football fans, when overcrowding caused a crush on the terraces of Sheffield Wednesday’s stadium at the start of an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest football clubs. The BBC spoke to Bruce Grobbelaar, who was in goal for Liverpool that day. He described how the fans had pleaded with him to help them.

Kicked off i’m in net lipping lanes in yes it’s still in the middle section that it was really getting chock-a-block and ninety seconds into the game we hit the crossbar and so there’s a great rule and then there was a surge you could you know just like it they came up the field the ball went into their pen and as i went to get the ball you saw the faces against

The fence and and people saying to you bruce can you help us please you know they’re killing us and i’m thinking boo who and then when i picked the ball up and i realized that there you see the surge come again i put the ball down kicked it up a turned around and you saw the people getting up to the top in the stands and a lot of the fans and a lot of people were

Saying get down you silly thing you know you can’t come up behind we full but they didn’t realize that they were they were standing on bodies they would wanted to get up as quick as possible the ball came back i asked the person near the gate please open the gate and they said well i can’t the students got the key and i said can’t you see that they need help we

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Got a hand on a shoulder from one of the coaches and they said get into the dressing room and that’s when we went in the dressing there was not really real talking one of the fans came in and he said i’ve seen ten dead bodies already and it’s a disaster so can he actually matt because he didn’t want to upset the players and then referee came in said now the game’s

Being called off and from that moment on we didn’t say much to each other we got on the bus with their families you want to know her – audrey journey back to liverpool was listening to the radio and the radio coming through 20 all these 25 bodies and i think it was when we–when got his 30 bodies we switched off the ready and waited until we got home and so that

What what it unfolded it was one of the worst times in my life but had it been at another club i think i might yeah everybody might have been you know say this is it i don’t want football anymore but because it was little for both football club and what we did and how we got around it was was fitting because liverpool is a city this family you took the time the

Trouble to go to some of the funerals and i know what the other players did as well was that an important part of the process for you of connecting with those affected yes it was and do you explain to those families that yes it is a tragedy but we’re going to help each other and it did it helped tremendously going to the funerals with those families going to speak

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To them and you keep in contact with them we will always remember the 96 people that lost their lives there’s a bunch of fans that will always let the world know what happened those fans will make sure that the 96 will never be forgotten and they want the number 96 is really you know it’s something that will be with us for the rest of our lives

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'They said, Bruce, can you help us?' BBC News By BBC News