Liverpool will attempt to repair the club's severely fractured relationship with Luis Suarez today after accusing him of deceit, on a day of contrition in which Kenny Dalglish admitted his own conduct in a television interview had not been fitting for the club's manager.
It is too early to say whether Suarez will also be fined for his refusal to offer a handshake to Manchester United's Patrice Evra on Saturday and there are doubts whether the terms of the Uruguayan's contract allow the club to do that. But some at Anfield are deeply angered by conduct which undermined Dalglish and left him deeply exposed when he was questioned in a television interview about why Suarez had declined the hand of the defender he racially abused last October.
More may become clear this week on whether Suarez is fined for bringing the club into disrepute. Liverpool's more enduring problem is how to salvage the Merseyside career of a player whose latest apology, just like the one he issued on 4 January, offered no apology or regret to Evra.
The extraordinary statement issued by Dalglish was the one which displayed most contrition and was so uncharacteristic that it left the distinct impression that Fenway Sports Group – the club's American owners – had ordered it. "All of us have a responsibility to represent this club in a fit and proper manner and that applies equally to me as Liverpool manager," Dalglish said. "When I went on TV after yesterday's game I hadn't seen what had happened, but I did not conduct myself in a way befitting of a Liverpool manager during that interview and I'd like to apologise for that."
Liverpool's managing director, Ian Ayre, commendably led the club's attempts to repair the damage, stating that Suarez had lied to Dalglish when he agreed to shake Evra's hands. But Liverpool awaited the direction of FSG, in Boston, before acting, and the Americans' hands are on this.
Dalglish's halo has now slipped in the eyes of a section of the club's fans. A number of supporters' comments beneath the Liverpool Echo report of Saturday's match called Dalglish's judgement into question.
The PFA chief executive, Gordon Taylor, has said that Liverpool should discipline Suarez over conduct which was "embarrassing" to the club. Taylor blamed the manager for encouraging Suarez's behaviour and accused Liverpool of refusing to accept the PFA's offer to act as a conciliator when Suarez was first accused.