John Henry: Kenny Dalglish was not a long-term option for Liverpool
John Henry insists Kenny Dalglish was only ever a short-term option to replace Roy Hodgson at Liverpool
John Henry has revealed former Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish was never viewed as a long-term replacement for Roy Hodgson.
The 61-year-old left his Anfield role at the end of the season following crunch talks with club owners Fenway Sports Group after taking charge of the Merseysiders in January 2011, initially on an interim basis before being handed a three-year contract last summer.
The Scot guided Liverpool to a strong climax to the 2010-11 season but failed to carry that form into the new campaign, and although the Reds won the Carling Cup and reached the FA Cup final, their lowly eighth-place finish in the Premier League table was deemed unacceptable.
“Kenny did say that if it was the manager’s job, he would only do it until we had the right young man to come in for the long term. We spoke about it two or three times before he actually took the job,” Henry told the Daily Mail.
“He was always saying no one man is bigger than the club. Everyone knows what it meant when he came back, how he brought all the disparate elements back together.
“There were a lot of different directions and he unified the club internally and externally. He did an incredible job of getting us all on the same page.”
The 62-year-old also revealed the club’s owners would still have felt it necessary to sack Dalglish even if the former Blackburn Rovers manager had masterminded a victory over Chelsea in the FA Cup final.
“We had a very poor second half to the season last year. But we did not attribute that to Kenny as such, the things he and Steve [Clarke] were doing,” Henry added.
“The FA Cup would not have made any difference had he won it, no, no. We were 17th [in the form table] over the second half of the season and Liverpool should not be in that position.”
“I don’t place the blame on Kenny and Steve – but I think it was obvious to every Liverpool fan that something was wrong and something needed to be done in the current circumstances.”