Kenny Dalglish has been reminded in the clearest terms the power of Liverpool football club rests not in the Anfield dugout but in a boardroom of Boston. The club’s owners were finally forced to take action to preserve the world wide reputation of one of England’s greatest brands.
After the handshake that never was on Saturday lunchtime, and Dalglish’s confrontational post-match interview with Sky in which he revealed he’d been visiting the same optician as Arsene Wenger, Liverpool were looking increasingly ridiculous.
The Liverpool manager’s determination to stand by his man has seen one of Europe’s most successful clubs drowning in victim culture. This was embodied by Dalglish’s comments before last Monday’s game against Spurs when he stated of Suarez, comments taken from BBC Sport,
“It’s fantastic to have him back. He should never have been banned in the first place.“
Rather than attempt to move on from the race debacle Dalglish instead opted to further stoke the fires ahead of what was already sure to be a highly charged encounter at Old Trafford.
Strangely Dalglish may almost be right in his angry outburst to Sky at Old Trafford that saw him inform Geoff Shreeves, quoted from The People,
“I think your very severe and you’re bang out of order to blame Luis Suarez for anything that happened today.”
Dalglish’s unequivocal backing of the Uruguayan, demonstrated most poignantly by the now infamous wearing of the Suarez t-shirts at Wigan, has left a man who has admitted using racial language feeling as though he has done nothing wrong. This belief of innocence and of being falsely accused is likely to have been Suarez’s reasoning for refusing to shake Evra’s hand, while also presuming his manager would support him in this action.
Dalglish terrible handling of the situation has left Suarez feeling bullet proof at Anfield, with Daniel Taylor of The Guardian stating that,
“As far as the Scot is concerned, Suarez is beyond reproach. That quite possibly, is the most alarming thing of all.“
This has certainly alarmed the powers that be at Anfield with statements rushing in from all quarters apologising for events at Old Trafford. However if we are to analyse the rhetoric of these apologies they seem rather hollow. Suarez, in a statement on Liverpool’s Website, apologises to the manager and for causing damage to Liverpool’s reputation but once again fails to acknowledge any wrong doing in racially abusing Patrice Evra.
The press releases from both Manager Dalglish and Director Ian Ayres also fail to muster a simple sorry to Evra. All this leads to the conclusion that inside the corridors of power at Anfield there is still a strong feeling of being victimised and that only the injection of their American owners have been responsible for yesterdays flood of empty apologises.
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