Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Kenny Dalglish Finally Poised To Sign Deal

Liverpool is expected to confirm Kenny Dalglish’s appointment as permanent manager in the next 10 days.

That will allow the club’s owners, Fenway Sports Group, to begin to clarify their plans for this summer’s transfer market. Liverpool have emerged as favourites to sign the Aston Villa winger Ashley Young for around £12 million and are also believed to be tracking his club and international team-mate Stewart Downing.
By the time Liverpool face both players at Villa Park on the final day of the campaign, the long-running and increasingly baffling saga concerning Dalglish is likely to be at an end.

Sam Kennedy, FSG’s president, confirmed as long ago as April 9 that talks with the Scot over making the temporary post he took over in January permanent were already under way, reward for the remarkable turnaround in Liverpool’s performances under his tenure.

Despite the dire warnings of Jose Mourinho at the start of the season that Liverpool were getting “worse, worse and worse” and the assertion by his predecessor Roy Hodgson that “95 per cent” of observers would agree with the Portuguese in November, Dalglish has taken the club from the obscurity of 13th place in the Premier League on Jan 8 to within touching distance of a place in the Europa League following Monday night’s 5-2 demolition of Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Though his record of 10 wins, three draws and three defeats in the Premier League is hardly flawless, that he has garnered more points than any team other than Chelsea since taking charge of a side mired in mid-table shows the scale of his achievement.

Such an impressive record only makes the delay in announcing his inevitable ascension to the permanent manager’s post he vacated in February 1991 more inexplicable.

FSG promised upon Dalglish’s appointment that they would conduct a thorough search for the best man to lead the club forward on a permanent basis; though director of football Damien Comolli insisted then that the Scot’s claims would be considered, Dalglish hardly fits the profile FSG had in mind for their first managerial appointment when they took over at Anfield.

They were keen on a young, ambitious manager used to working in the sort of structure they were quick to implement at Liverpool, alongside a director of football, and examined the credentials of the likes of André Villas Boas, at Porto, Borussia Dortmund’s Jurgen Klopp and Marseille manager Didier Deschamps.

Dalglish, though, has enjoyed such success that all debate has been rendered irrelevant. Even Liverpool’s fans have proved as much: since Dalglish took charge, their volume has increased by 40 per cent to 97 decibels, according to the site

In an ideal world, the Scot, cast from management’s old school, would probably like a longer contract with greater power over recruitment than the club’s owners would willingly afford him, but his results are unarguable.

“We have been flying since Christmas,” said defender Jamie Carragher. “The manager has come in and made a big difference.

"Whatever he has done has worked. But the players coming in have made a huge difference too. [Luis] Suárez is superb. If he keeps playing like that he will be a bigger legend than I will ever be.”

The Uruguayan – now on five goals for his new club – will be joined in the summer by more than half a dozen players, once Dalglish’s appointment is confirmed, with the Aston Villa duo, as well as Bolton’s Gary Cahill, Newcastle’s José Enrique and Sylvain Marveaux, of Rennes, believed to be high on Comolli and Dalglish’s agenda.

Liverpool Target Diego Perotti Linked With Sevilla Exit

Sevilla have placed a £13 million valuation on winger Diego Perotti, according to reports.

The Argentine international has been linked with Liverpool for several months now, with the Reds confirmed to have scouted the player and monitoring his situation in Spain.

Poised for an exit from his current La Liga home after Sevilla agreed the pre-contract agreement signing of Piotr Trochowski, The People claim Los Rojiblancos will start negotiations for the player at £13 million.

Spurs boss Harry Redknapp is also thought to be interested in the player, with the White Hart Lane outfit also sending scouts to run the rule over the 22-year-old former Deportivo Moron player.

Kenny Dalglish is known to be in the market for a winger, with Ashley Young, Eden Hazard and Juan Mata all reportedly appearing on the Liverpool radar in recent months.

Fenway Sports Group, the owners at Anfield, are thought to have pledged a transfer war chest in the region of £50 million to the Liverpool boss as the Scot looks to make significant signings in the summer.

Alongside Damien Comolli, director of football, the pair are thought to have a number of targets in a string of positions and it promises to be a bust summer for Liverpool.

Liverpool Shoot Past Rivals For €15m Assassin

Liverpool have been boosted in the race to sign Lille striker Gervinho, after Newcastle reportedly decided against trying to make a big money bid for the star after he admitted wanting to play Champions League football.

“I am trying my best to concentrate on the final push for the league,” Gervinho told

“We want to win the championship. Also, we are in the cup final.

“At the end of the season, my advisers and I will speak to the club and see what to do, but if I am leaving a club which will play in the Champions League I will only go to one who is in the Champions League.

“It is the best competition and I want to be a part of that set-up every year.”

Newcastle were thought to still be considering a big money offer in the hopes of tempting Gervinho away from other English clubs, including Liverpool and Arsenal, but the Journal is reporting that Alan Pardew has decided against making such an offer.

While Liverpool will most likely not make the Champions League this season their squad is looking particularly promising, and the Anfield club might be able to offer Gervinho the carrot of a long term plan to win trophies in England as well as the Champions League.

While Arsenal were thought to be interested in the star, the €15 million price tag Sky Sports has reported is hanging over Gervinho’s head may be too much for the frugal Arsene Wenger to stomach.

This now leaves Liverpool as favourites to secure the coveted Ivory Coast international’s signature, with Dalglish reportedly planning to build an unstoppable strike force.

Jose Angel Could Be On His Way To Anfield In The Summer

Highly rated La Liga left-back Jose Angel is a summer transfer target for Liverpool according to Sky Sports' Spanish correspondent, Guillem Balague.

As reported on his website,, Angel could move to Anfield when the transfer window reopens in June after being tracked in recent months.

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish has made it clear the Reds need to add a left-sided defender in the summer, after deeming Paul Konchesky surplus to requirements.

Dalglish has instead chosen to deploy an out of position Glen Johnson at left-back for much of the season, and has more recently tasked Liverpool's academy graduate John Flanagan with filling Anfield's problem position.

Director of Footballl Damien Comolli has been on the look-out for a defensive addition to improve the squad at Anfield, causing Liverpool to be linked with a host of names over the past few months.

Jose Enrique, Fabio Coentrao, Gael Clichy, and even former Reds star John Arne Riise have all been cited as potential targets, but it is now understood that with an emphasis once again placed on youth development, the Spanish U-21 international has been moved to the top of Liverpool's list of targets.

Angel hinted at a January move to Malaga, when the La Liga rivals offered to pay €3million to bring him to La Rosaleda.

However, after a deal failed to materialize, Angel has continued to deliver committed performances for Sporting, who sit comfortably in mid-table in Spain's top-flight division.

But if Liverpool were to step up their interest in Angel, his head may well be turned once again by a club that boasts such European pedigree.

Murphy Lauds Reds Progress

Fulham captain Danny Murphy believes his former club Liverpool can mount a title challenge next season.

The Reds are in the middle of an impressive run of form having fought back up to fifth in the league following a sluggish start to the season under Roy Hodgson.

With Kenny Dalglish now at the helm and a new crop of youngsters staking a claim for first-team places, there is an air of optimism at the club that has not gone unnoticed from former Kop star Murphy.

The 34-year-old was forced to reflect on a heavy 5-2 defeat at the hands of Liverpool at Craven Cottage on Monday night, a strong statement from a team in form.

"At the moment they're playing under very little pressure," he said.

"They do not have to go out and win games because nobody is expecting them to reach a certain position.

"It will be a different task when players are under pressure every week if they are fighting for the top.

"But with Kenny in charge, and a few more additions, they'll be pushing for the top four.

"They've got young lads coming through and doing brilliantly. The full-back John Flanagan was terrific against us, Jay Spearing is a good player.

"Mix that with Stevie G (Gerrard) to come back, plus some investment from the American owners, and I would imagine they will be up there.

"They are obviously competing with Manchester City, who'll probably spend treble what Liverpool do.

"Manchester United will spend again, Chelsea will, and everybody is putting pressure on Arsenal to spend again, so it will be tough.

"But Liverpool has got the right man in charge now and the fans are happy. You can hear how happy they are with what they're seeing."

Murphy admits he was particularly disappointed with the performance of his team on Monday night as they were beaten heavily by his former club.

The midfielder felt that the performance was not indicative of the form his team has shown this term, especially at home.

Murphy added: "A lot of us made mistakes.

"It's disappointing because since January we've been on a good run and our home form has been great.

"But we always said a top-10 finish is our aim and we've still got a good chance of that."

Six Young Guns Earn England Call

Frank McParland has today saluted the crop of talent emerging from the club's Academy.

Six players from Liverpool's youth base have been named alongside Jonjo Shelvey in England U19s latest squad - following hot on the heels of the quartet that were originally involved with the U17s at the European Championships.

It is further evidence of the depth of quality now being nurtured in Kirkby - and the Academy director feels the news caps a very productive campaign for his staff and players.

"We've had four players called up for England U17s and we've just had news about the six that have been called up for the U19s," McParland told

"Add that to the two lads who have been involved with the first-team for the past four or five games and it's all very positive.

"Okay our U18s didn't win the league and it was disappointing for us. But I think the coaches realise that getting the players into the first-team set-up is the most important thing and we've made some great progress.

"It's testament to the hard work everyone is doing here."

Liverpool's Academy youngsters called up for England U19s: Coady, Robinson, Flanagan, Ngoo, Wisdom, Ince.

Reds To Open New Art Gallery

Liverpool FC's brand new art exhibition celebrating the club's illustrious history and rich heritage will open its doors at the city's Bluecoat centre on Saturday, May 14 - and is FREE for fans to enter.

Over the next 12 months, the 'Reds Gallery' will showcase a series of exclusive photographic exhibitions which include iconic LFC images, commissioned pieces as well as alternative images influenced by acclaimed artists and the award winning photographer Steve Hale, who followed the Reds for over 30 years.

It's the perfect opportunity for Kopites to take a wander down memory lane over the moments in time and legends that have helped mould the club into one of the most unique in world football.

The displays are scheduled to change every three months - and the maiden exhibition will pay homage to Liverpool's legendary Boot Room until August 11.

Liverpool FC Commercial Tourism manager Tom Cassidy said: "Having decided on the idea a while back we then had to find a venue and the Bluecoat, with its history, culture and location, fits the bill perfectly.

"We are very excited at the potential of this project as there's huge cross-over between the two organizations and potential exhibition ideas. Visitors can expect a vibrant and entertaining experience which will appeal to non football fans of all ages in addition to our loyal followers."

Entry to the gallery is totally free, and it's open from 10am-6pm Monday to Saturday and 10am-5pm on Sundays.

You can visit the Reds Gallery exhibition at the Bluecoat on School Lane, Liverpool L1 3BX.

The first exhibition celebrates the key personnel involved in the legendary LFC Boot Room. Measuring approximately 12 foot x 12 foot, the Boot Room became a think tank behind a force that would dominate English football throughout the sixties, seventies and eighties.

Led by legendary managers Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley, with a supporting cast of Reuben Bennett, Joe Fagan, Ronnie Moran and Roy Evans, a philosophy was forged that took Liverpool FC to the very pinnacle of domestic and European Football.

The Boot Room may have given way to the necessity of a media and press room in the early nineties but the legend lives strong.

This revealing photo exhibition celebrates the iconic personnel involved like you've never seen them before.

The second exhibition traces the inspiration, humour and celebrations of Liverpool FC's adoring fans and the role they've played in the success of the club over the decades.

Adidas Taking LFC To Dublin

Liverpool fans Rosanna Davison and Dublin GAA star Paul Brogan were on hand to launch the Adidas home away from home campaign today.

Adidas is bringing Liverpool FC to the streets of Dublin this week and offering fans the once in a lifetime opportunity to meet some of club's star players when they visit Ireland to launch the new Adidas 2011/12 away kit.

Speaking at the launch Rosanna said: "Certainly from a female perspective I often get looks of shock and amazement when I say I am a big Liverpool fan, but I love to go to matches and watch them on TV," Rosanna said.

"It's something I really enjoy, watching the game with my family or going over to Anfield. I wouldn't be that mad about watching any old team play, it has to be Liverpool."

She added: "My father has been a fan for years and my brothers are into it as well and I think my Dad's mission was to get us all supporting them - even the dog had a red collar and was a Liverpool supporter. It's been a great family thing growing up. I still love going over to Anfield when I can and nothing beats the atmosphere over at the matches, especially in the Kop."