The LFC Awards (06.05.2014)

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Young Player of the Year

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Supporters’ Club of the Year

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Goal of the Year

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Fan of the Year

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Staff Recognition Award

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Academy Player of the Year

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Ladies’ Player of the Year

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Players’ Player of the Year

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Bill Shankly Award

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Lifetime Achievement Award

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Fans’ Player of the Year

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Outstanding Achievement Award

I have the ultimate respect for Kenny Dalglish. My door is always open for Kenny Dalglish. This is his home. As chairman Tom Werner said, he is the heart and soul of this club. His love for this club is unrivalled. He is the best player in the history of this club. I am not here to win any race or competition. This guy is a legend in the game and here at Liverpool Football Club. But what I know is history judges you as a manager and hopefully in time people will look back at what I have achieved here and I can walk beside these people. But there is no way I can try and overtake someone like Kenny Dalglish. All I can do is be myself. That is all I’ve ever tried to be - to be a student of the game and be the very best I could. That has helped me make a meteoric rise as because of my work I’ve been able to get the opportunities.
Brendan Rodgers on Kenny Dalglish
Kenny came into the Club as Manager at our request at a time when Liverpool Football Club really needed him. He didn’t ask to be Manager; he was asked to assume the role. He did so because he knew the Club needed him. He did more than anyone else to stabilize Liverpool over the past year-and-a-half and to get us once again looking forward. We owe him a great debt of gratitude. However, results in the Premier League have been disappointing and we believe to build on the progress that has already been made, we need to make a change. We are committed to delivering success for our supporters and our ambition remains resolute to return this great Club to the elite of England and Europe, where it belongs.
Tom Werner
Kenny will always be more than a championship winning manager, more than a championship winning star player. He is in many ways the heart and soul of the club. He personifies everything that is good about Liverpool Football Club. He has always put the Club and its supporters first. Kenny will always be a part of the family at Anfield. Our job now is to identify and recruit the right person to take this Club forward and build on the strong foundations put in place during the last 18 months.
John W Henry on Kenny Dalglish
Hopefully they will support that person as well as they have supported myself, which has been fantastic. The support the fans gave us was a huge influence in winning the Carling Cup. To be perfectly honest, in most of the games this season the players have covered themselves with great credit. They have been a credit to themselves and to the football club. The fans will always, always stick with Liverpool Football Club and support the players and the team and the person that is to be the next manager of the club. That’s the way these fans have been brought up and that’s the way it should continue. For me it’s obviously going to be different, not being involved in the way I have been as before. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want Liverpool to go on now and be really successful. And that’s the same for anyone who now comes in to the club. What Liverpool FC deserves and the supporters deserve is far more important than me.

Kenny Dalglish on the new manager

(could all Liverpool FC supporters show the same dignity as this man? not from what I’ve seen so far)

The last 24 hours has been a rollercoaster for me. I am very sad to see Kenny leave our club. He is my idol and will always be my idol and I would like to express my thanks and appreciation for what he has done for my career. My focus now is on doing my best for England in the European Championships and then returning to Liverpool for a new season where we will look to build on the progress of the last 18 months and be competitive at the business end of the Premier League.
Steven Gerrard

Ian Ayre on Sky Sports (full interview)

What is the position of Steve Clarke at this moment of time?

Steve’s still at the club. There’s no change there. Steve’s on holiday. There’s no plans to move that along unless it’s a discussion we have later on with Steve about how he feels about Kenny. But he’s on holiday. So there’s no change at all.

I know you have a vast experience of Liverpool and that’ you’re a huge Liverpool fan. Who will advise the owners about where to go for the next manager? Would you be involved in that?

Yes of course. It’s a good question because I had quite a lot of texts and emails myself and I bumped into some fans this morning on my way to work. I think people would be way off the mark to assume that John Henry and Tom Werner are sat with a list just making a choice on their won. They’ve engaged discussion and the services of some very, very talented and knowledgeable people from within the football industry. And you don’t get to where John’s got to and where Tom’s got to in their careers without taking the best possible advice for big and important decisions. So it stands to reason that they would absolutely and will absolutely do that in this process. We’ll balance all the different things: what does the club need? What do they see in the plan? What does the plan say we’re looking for? And taking the best possible advice from those qualified to give it to find the best result.

You know Liverpool. You know what is needed here. What is needed for the next manager to come in?

I think the most important thing is that John has said a couple of times that we have a long-term plan for this football club to restore it to where it should be in European and English football. SO it needs somebody that fits with all of the parts of that plan. It’s not a plan that we’re going to roll out publicly and tell everybody the detail of but this idea that there’s some kind of turmoil going on here because we’re making changes (is not true). To implement a plan and to achieve a plan you have to change. There’s certainly no crisis or turmoil here. There are difficult decisions to be made and there are difficult things to be managed but they’re being managed. And just as much as we’ve had a short period of people leaving the club, we’re going through a period, very quickly, of people arriving at the club and that will be exciting and interesting and then it will be all about taking that plan forward and delivering a result. So it will take somebody that fits within that plan that can deliver that part of the overall way forward for Liverpool Football Club.

Do you have a list of names? Have you spoken to people?

We haven’t spoken to people yet but we’ve just started to bring together that list. I think it goes without saying that the respect everyone has here for Kenny Dalglish would mean that we certainly would not have considered or spoken to anyone before Kenny’s departure yesterday. So work in earnest starts today. We had a call last night and talked through some of that, based on the advice that had been taken but it starts very much today.

Are you looking for a particular type of person? A particular age of person? A young manager? Older manager?

No I don’t think you set that type of criteria. You wouldn’t rule somebody out because of any of those reasons. It’s about finding the person to do the job that we expect, in the form we expect it to be done. It’s too early to start setting criteria and throwing names about - we’ll leave everybody else to do that and it’s all part of the game, isn’t it?

You’ve seen the list though, I’m sure. Martinez, Andre Villas Boas, are all these people the sort of people you are looking at?

Everybody has a chance. Just like everything, we have to be inclusive and open and honest. You would listen and consider the values of anyone but, in reality, I think we would narrow down pretty quickly on a shortlist of people that fit the profile and the bill of what we expect to happen.

We had a fan say the problem with Kenny is that you should never go back. Then we said, ‘who do you want for the next manager?’ And he said, ‘Rafa Benitez’. Is that something you may not go to? And I’m not specifically talking about Rafa, but going back again (in general). Is that era over at Liverpool do you think?

I think in any decision the most important thing is that you have a plan. It’s not about blindly weaving around trying to make decisions - this is a very, very focused team of people with a plan. For that reason, we will define what we are looking for and you shouldn’t include or dismiss anyone on that basis. As long as we know where we’re headed and what we’re looking for and what we need to achieve, we will get through the mire of everybody trying to suggest it being this person or that person, going backwards and forwards. It’s really just about focus now. What do we need? What’s the criteria? Who are the people available for that opportunity? Who are the people out there that fit that bill? And go and do the job and get a new manager into Liverpool and move forward.

I guess now it’s just about timescale? Have you put one on it at all?

You can’t put a time scale on because there could be all sorts of issues that might add to time around it and you want to be absolutely certain that you get the right person. You don’t want to create a time pressure. But we’re all conscious of the fact that we have a summer to go in and a transfer window to operate in and we have a team to bring back together and start winning matches next season. So that will dictate some of it but we certainly won’t dive in just because of time.

When Kenny was offered the role on a caretaker basis back in January last year, the club was at a particularly low point. We’d just come out of a period of great turmoil with the previous ownership and on the pitch, things just weren’t working. Kenny came in after being asked to take on the role by the owners and he immediately unified the club - from the supporters to the staff to the players. He helped piece the club back together and for that, everyone at Liverpool Football Club will be eternally grateful. The football club is now in a much healthier shape than it was last January off the pitch. The owners have removed the debt and everything is now being put in place to compete commercially and financially with our main rivals. The only missing piece of the jigsaw - the most important piece of the jigsaw - is football and success in the Premier League. The club has a clear long-term strategy in place to get to where we want to be - on and off the pitch - and that is why changes have been made on both the football and business sides of the club. Whilst Kenny is disappointed to have left, he’s a man of great dignity and the respect we have for him will never change. I spoke to Kenny at length last night and whilst we were friends before he returned to the club, I’m sure we’ll remain friends long after he’s left.

Ian Ayre on Kenny Dalglish

(but I thought Ian was gone too? Guess people should wait for official confirmation before venting their spleens).