Roy Hodgson will be officially named Liverpool FC’s new manager on Wednesday.
The 62-year-old is due on Merseyside to complete the formalities of signing a contract after the Reds agreed a compensation package in the region of £2million with Fulham for his release.
Cordial negotiations have been ongoing in the past 72 hours between Liverpool’s Managing Director Christian Purslow and Fulham Chief Executive Alistair Mackintosh and they have now reached a successful conclusion.
Though Liverpool – who has remained tight-lipped throughout their search to replace Rafa Benitez – were linked with a clutch of names, Hodgson was always the number one candidate.
Other names in the frame included former Real Madrid boss Manuel Pellegrini, Galatasary’s Frank Rijkaard and Didier Deschamps of Marseille, while Kenny Dalglish also made it clear he was desperate to take the job on.
Dalglish had initially been named as part of the recruitment process but he was desperate to have a second crack at the post he occupied between 1985 and 1991 when he felt his claims were as strong as the other candidates.
The board, though, were anxious to pursue Hodgson and Liverpool will be his 16th job in a managerial career that has spanned almost 35 years.
His first post was with Swedish side Halmstads in 1976 and he enjoyed instant success, leading them to two Swedish titles; he would later coach Malmo after a brief stint with Bristol City.
Success in charge of the Swiss national team led to him being appointed Inter Milan manager in 1995 and the highlight of his time at the San Siro was an appearance in the 1997 UEFA Cup final appearance, which they lost on penalties to Schalke 04.
Hodgson’s first crack at the Premier League came later that year, when he took over at Blackburn, but things did not go according to plan at Ewood Park – despite qualifying for Europe, he was sacked in December 1998.
Stints with Udinese, the United Arab Emirates, Viking Stavanger and Finland followed before Fulham turned to him in December 2007 and he successfully led their battle to avoid the drop, which they did thanks to a last day with at Portsmouth.
After that, his time at Craven Cottage went from strength to strength and he enhanced his reputation while transforming Fulham’s fortunes, guiding them to their highest Premier League finish and an appearance in the Europa League final.
Now he has a fresh challenge and Hodgson, the LMA’s current Manager of the Year, will meet those Liverpool players who have not been at the World Cup tomorrow when they return for pre-season training.
It had been mooted that Hodgson, who is expected to bring his trusted assistant Mike Kelly with him to Anfield, would be favourite to become England manager if the Football Association decided to sack Fabio Capello.
However, it is understood the delay in Hodgson being appointed to his new role had nothing to do with him waiting to see what happened with England.
One of Hodgson’s first jobs at Anfield will be to ratify Yossi Benayoun’s move to Chelsea after the clubs agreed a fee in the region of £6m for the Israeli midfielder.