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Sir Kenny Dalglish – better late than never

April 15, 2011

When Kenny Dalglish was reinstated as Liverpool manager in January, I wrote that the decision was about more than football. It was about uniting the supporters and the club once more. Apart from his excellent record both on the pitch and in the dugout, Dalglish has the utmost respect of all Liverpool fans because of his actions away from the trivialities of football.

In the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster, Liverpool the club and Liverpool the city sought a beacon of hope in their darkest of days. It was Dalglish who filled this role. “They supported Liverpool,” he said of the supporters, “now it is the turn of Liverpool Football Club to support them.” Along with his wife Marina, he attended funerals, up to four in one day, visited hospitals and consoled the bereaved. An unforgettable effort.

The strain ultimately proved too much. “All the emotion and stress of Hillsborough, all the weight of responsibility he felt, had taken its toll,” remarked Dalglish’s daughter Kelly. The emotional burden he bore prompted his resignation in 1991. But the efforts and personal sacrifices made by the Scot would never be forgotten on Merseyside.

With this in mind it is heartwarming to hear of plans to press for a knighthood for King Kenny. At the memorial service on the 22nd anniversary of the disaster, Steve Rotheram announced that he, along with other MPs, would be putting forward an Early Day Motion in support of the bestowing of such an honour. One can only hope it succeeds. Footballing achievements are easy to quantify. Record books and websites immortalise the goalscoring or managerial prowess of an individual or team. Personal sacrifice when dealing with life and death is different. While a knighthood for Dalglish may partly reflect his success on the football pitch, his words and deeds post-Hillsborough are the most deserving of thanks and recognition.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Darren Steele permalink
    May 26, 2011 8:53 am

    Liam this blog site is excellent, I think Dani Pacheco will be class (just look at how he progresses on FM11! which I am in season 2022 of 😛 [shame]) and I am delighted to see Kenny bringing youth academy stars into the first team. Next season we will have a chance if Gerrard finds form and stays fit. Let the glory days return step forward Sir Kenny Dalglish!

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