What It Means: a pool with thick or muddy water, Liuerpul in 1190.   

Why It's There: the slave trade, which paid for all those Georgian buildings (more than Bath or Dublin), became the main transatlantic port when the River Dee silted up in the 18th century, and a century ago was known as the Second City of the Empire, with nearly a million people. Now recovered from three decades of dereliction when it was only kept going by football.

Why They're There: uniquely a team formed to fill an empty ground, after Everton left in early 1892 when the landlord put the rent up. Formed that summer and joined the league the very next season.

The Field of Dreams: opened in 1884 when Everton's snooty neighbours at their nearby Priory Road ground objected to matchday noise disturbing their "pastoral serenity." Home to the original Spion Kop, not quite as exotic when you learn it's Afrikaans for Lookout Headland, and just keeps on growing after 20 years of argument about moving. Work began on the vast new main stand just after Boro's last visit; it opened last September, and Anfield now holds 54,000 - more than Newcastle - despite no parking or station anywhere nearby, even though there's a line a few hundred yards away.

First footing: November 1902 in the league, but not until November 1974 in any cup, home or away.

High Point: Five European Cups, three Super Cups, three UEFA Cups, 18 league titles, seven FA Cups, eight League Cups.  

Low Point: relegation in 1954 (with Boro) after 49 years in Division One - and being replaced by Everton, then taking eight years to get back. Before it they'd only spent three seasons out of it.

Local Heroes: Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley, Kenny Dalglish, Ian Rush, Roger Hunt, Tommy Smith, Graeme Souness; and South Bank's Trevor Hicks, chairman of the Hillsborough Families Support Group. 

Local Villains: Middlesbrough FC and Steve Gibson, vindicated over his claim of poaching of Christian Ziege, when the FA fined Liverpool £20,000 and Ziege £10,000; Kevin Keegan said after failing to score twice against Boro that he'd "rather take the wife shopping than play against them;" Tony Wilson, who suggested the landmark monument on a proposed artificial island at the mouth of the Mersey should be a giant sign pointing to "Manchester, 35 miles;"  Rupert Murdoch, South Yorkshire Police, and above all Kelvin McKenzie, whose sacking from the Sun for his Ross Barkley comments was praised by reds and blues alike.   

Boro Highs: 4-2 (April 1907), 4-3 (December 1960), 3-1 (February 1933) - the only times they've ever scored more than two - and 1-0 (November 1974) in the League Cup. And 2-3 (February 2008), even though they lost - as it's the only time in the last 34 years they've scored twice there.   

Boro Lows: 2-7 (September 1931), 1-6 (March 1906), 2-6 (March 1934), 0-5 (November 1902), 1-5 (February 1962 and December 1996); and 1-4 (November 1981) in the League Cup.    

Hello to: Steve Bloomer (March 1906), George Burton (December 1909), Benny Yorston (March 1934), Ray Bilcliff (March 1952), Joe Rayment (September 1952), Andy McCreesh (August 1981), Peter Davenport (November 1988), Malcolm Christie, Chris Riggott and Michael Ricketts (February 2003), Justin Hoyte (August 2008), Yanic Wildschut (September 2014).

Goodbye to: James Tyldesley (April 1907), Henry "Pep" Carr (March 1911), Andrew Carr (February 1933), Derek Weddle, (February 1962), David Mills (November 1978), Marlon Beresford (December 2001).

Hello and Goodbye to: William Worrall (March 1906), an amateur, soon confirmed when he let in six; John Eustace (February 2003)  the epitome of ephemeral, three minutes of fleeting fame; and Jamal Blackman (September 2014), unforgettable record-breaking night as he faced 15 penalties.

Boro Hero: Alf Common (April 1907) hat-trick in 4-2 win, and the only Boro player to get one there; Jim Platt (|December 1974) saved an Alec Lindsay penalty in 1-0 League Cup win; Steve Baker (January 1998), man-marked Steve McManaman out of the game so completely McManaman lost it and sarcastically handed him the ball near the end.

Boro Bogeyman: Stan Collymore (December 1996) four goals in 1-5; and hat-tricks for Sam Raybould (November 1902) in 0-5, Daniel Shone (November 1921) 0-4, Gordon Hodgson (March 1934) 2-6, Roger Hunt (February 1962) 1-5, Fernando Torres (February 2008) 2-3. And Mike Hooper (November 1988) stand-in keeper stopped Peter Davenport getting at least a debut hat-trick.

Boro Bad Boy: Chris Riggott (December 2005), two yellows, with a little help from Fernando Morientes; Jeremie Aliadiere (February 2008), the notorious cheek slap. Boro's appeal over the red card was rejected as "frivolous" and he was given a four-game ban by a three-man FA Disciplinary Commission whose identities to this day must remain secret under FA rules. The week Boro and Liverpool last met the FA again criticised FIFA for being too secretive.

Typical Boro: 1-4 (April 1954) already-relegated Liverpool beat Boro for the second time in three days meaning Boro have taken one point from three games in four days against the two teams either side of them, and are still second-bottom.
3-0 (November 1988), Liverpool hadn't won at home since their opening game, Ian Rush hadn't scored in the 17 since returning from Juventus. He gets the third.
0-2 (December 2005), 25% of Fernando Morientes' Liverpool goals, and the only time he scored two in the league. Didn't score again for 17 games.
2-2 (September 2014), Jordan Rossiter is gifted a goal on his Liverpool debut, and even now with Rangers has yet to score another; Suso gets his only goal in his final game - after five years at Liverpool.

The Other Typical Boro: 2-0 (March 1976), the last team to beat them before they won eight of their next nine games and took the title;
0-0 (October 1976), the only team to get even a point at Anfield for over in a year - and twice. Liverpool won every other home game from January 1976 to January 1977.

Nearly Boro: Liverpool's first league game was in Middlesbrough, at Ironopolis' Paradise Ground in 1893; they won 2-0.

Football Before 1992: Boro won five times in a row at Anfield between February 1957 and December 1960.    

Mystery Man: April 1996, Andy Campbell gets a surprise first start after some failed fitness tests, but no-one packed a No. 32 away shirt so he has to play in a blank one. Not the first nor last anonymous Boro player away from home.
 
Your Boys Took One Hell of a Beating: John Bishop, Gary Barlow, Elvis Costello, Sue Johnston, Daniel Craig, Clive Owen, Jason Isaacs; among the bandwagon-jumpers like Samuel L Jackson, Damian Lewis, Brad and Angelina (although she also turned up with Billy Bob Thornton) are Mike Myers (parents from Old Swan) and Kim Catterall (born in Mossley Hill); And Dr Dre, who started watching them in the late 1980's after "they whipped some poor dudes four or five zip." That may well have been Boro.