Kenny Dalglish says Liverpool successor must be 'better'

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish may have stressed he would be happy to stand aside at the end of the season but suggested the club would have to find a "better" candidate to replace him.

Director of football strategy Damien Comolli admitted the possibility of the 59-year-old Scot, brought in on Saturday to take charge until the summer after the departure of Roy Hodgson, being made permanent boss had not been ruled out.

Dalglish insists he wants to help in any way he can, although his assertion that he will happily give way to a superior contender puts the pressure on the club's owners New England Sports Ventures to find a top-class replacement if his short stint in charge turns out to be a success.

"My understanding is it is until the end of the season and that is no problem for me," he said.

"I've heard stories about me demanding this or that - when I was phoned early on Saturday morning it was a straightforward 'yes' and that was it for me.

"There are no conditions, no promises, nothing. We'll not start running before we walk.

"I came back to work at a club that myself and my family are eternally grateful for many things they have done for us.

"If I do really well and there is someone better than me that comes along I will have no problem whatsoever.

"I am here to be of help to the club and if that means Kenny Dalglish is not the manager that is not a problem.

"If at the end of the season the owners have their eyes on someone else then I have no problem stepping aside because if I didn't I wouldn't be true to my word.

"I would do it readily if it meant the club improving."

The former Reds player and manager joked: "If I can get to the end of the season then I'll probably end up as one of the longest-serving managers in the Premier League any way."

However, director of football strategy Damien Comolli has not ruled out the legendary figure's chances of assuming the role.

Asked what the criteria was for identifying the next permanent manager the Frenchman said: "Competence, someone who will fit into the club and playing philosophy and huge on man-management - the three things most important to the club.

"It is open to people that we think fit into what I have described and Kenny obviously fits into that category."

Asked whether that meant Dalglish would be considered he added: "The answer is yes, there will be a thorough search of what we want to do, where we want to get to and we will talk to Kenny about it and see where it takes us."

Dalglish wanted the job last summer after the departure of Rafael Benitez but was overlooked by the previous regime of owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett, chairman Martin Broughton, managing director Christian Purslow and commercial director Ian Ayre.

Only the latter of those remains on the board in any executive capacity and he defended the way they arrived at the ill-fated appointment of Hodgson, who struggled for results and failed to win over the fans who turned against him.

Ayre did accept, however, the 63-year-old was probably the wrong man for the club.

"In the summer we went through a very exhaustive process and it is easy to look in hindsight and say it might have been better or different," he said.

"What we have done in the last few days is bring Kenny back to turn it around.

"Roy's departure was not based on the fans' reaction.

"There is not anyone at this club who does not think Roy is a great coach.

"Sometimes things don't come together and don't gel and I think everyone felt that was the case with the level of defeats (nine in the league) and situation on the pitch drove the decision."

Hodgson signed a three-year contract in July but Ayre stressed that paying him off - having also had to fork out a fortune when Benitez left - would not impact on any transfer funds available to Dalglish.

"We reached an agreement with Roy and certainly that type of payment does not come into the same area of business as our transfer budget," he said.

The rebuilding process at Anfield continued earlier in the day with the appointment of former Chelsea assistant manager Steve Clarke as first-team coach.

At the moment that is only until the end of the season but the club have already entered into discussions about his longer-term future.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100(More than you think)
Arts and Entertainment
John Hurt will voice Prince Bolkonsky in Radio 4's War and Peace
radioRadio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
News
i100
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Avatar grossed $2.8bn at the box office after its release in 2009
filmJames Cameron is excited
News
news

Lincoln MP Karl McCartney 'denied all knowledge' of the Twitter activity

Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
filmDirector said film would 'never have been financed' with ethnic minority actors in key roles
Arts and Entertainment
Stik on the crane as he completed the mural
art
News
The author PD James, who died on 27 November 2014
people

Detective novelist who wrote Death comes to Pemberley passed away peacefully at her home, aged 94

Arts and Entertainment
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
arts + ents
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?