Kenny Dalglish has been giving Rafa Benitez rave reviews as the Newcastle Manager prepares to return to the club where he enjoyed some great times.
Dalglish is now a non-executive director at the club and has paid tribute to Rafa Benitez, saying that he deserves respect not just for the success on the pitch, but also the legacy off it.
Rafa was at Liverpool for six years (2004- 2010) and in that time put building blocks in place that have helped the club for many years following his departure, with the benefits still been felt now.
It would of course be a dream for something similar to happen at Newcastle, a respected Manager of Rafa Benitez’ level to be given the freedom to do the same on Tyneside – given the time and backing to Rafalutionise Newcastle United.
Not sure how we can look at Kenny Dalglish’s legacy on Tyneside, as he dismantled Kevin Keegan’s team and got rid of Ferdinand, Ginola, Clark, Tino, Pavel and John Beresford.
In their place he brought in a strange assortment: the ‘Dad’s Army’ trio of Rush, Pearce and Barnes, very good players such as Solano, Given and Speed, plus a right load of….with the likes of Hamilton, Brady, Guivarc’h, Andersson, Pistone, Serrant and his (Dalglish’s!!!) son Paul.
“Rafa Benitez will be welcomed back with open arms and rightly so.
“The Liverpool supporters have a reputation for paying tribute to anyone who has made a positive contribution to the club and I have no doubt it will be no different on this occasion.
“It isn’t just about the trophies that Rafa won as Liverpool manager, although they are testament enough to the service he provided to the club – it is also about his legacy and we are still reaping the rewards of that today.
“I was fortunate enough that Rafa invited me to help out at the Academy in whatever way I could and I will always be eternally grateful for that.
“The benefits of the changes he put in place at that time are still being seen, you only have to look at some of the players in the first team squad to recognise that.
“Sheyi Ojo, Jordon Ibe and Jerome Sinclair were brought in at that time, while others including Jon Flanagan, Connor Randall, Ryan Kent, Cameron Brannagan, Ryan Kent and Jordan Rossiter had the benefit of working with the staff that Rafa put in place.”