Kenny Dalglish is losing credibility

Just when we all thought we could start to move on from the Luis Suarez/Patrice Evra controversy, Kenny Dalglish has decided to re-address the issue. Asked if he was happy with how Suarez had played after coming on as a substitute against Tottenham on Monday night, the Reds manager couldn’t resist replying “he should never have been banned in the first place.” Sometimes, managers can be prompted by interviewers immediately after games, but Andy Burton wasn’t fishing for controversy. This was a pre-meditated answer by a man who is losing credibility.

Dalglish and Liverpool as a football club have handled the entire situation appallingly. Their embarrassingly unprofessional statements and absurd “supportive” t-shirts are not befitting of a club of the size of Liverpool, nor with the history and traditions of fighting such worthy causes. A 115-page detailed document was published to back up the FA’s Independent Commission’s verdict that the Uruguayan striker was guilty. It appeared to cover every aspect necessary, but it served only to increase Liverpool’s sense of injustice.

Throughout the saga, statements issued by the club have labelled Patrice Evra an unreliable witness, accused the FA of being biased against them and intimated that Manchester United conjured up the entire accusation just so one of their rivals would be missing one of their better players. While it is understandable that the club want to stand by one of their own - it is abhorrent to do so at the expense of condoning racist acts. Notice, I did not say racism. I do not believe Luis Suarez is racist. But he was racially abusive towards another professional - and his claim that his words were used in a friendly manner would be laughable if the charge wasn’t so serious.

A large section of Liverpool supporters haven’t emerged from events with much credit either. The vast majority I have either spoken to in person or seen on Twitter have blindly supported Suarez without any sympathy for the victim. Football is so tribal, however, that I am perhaps being a little naïve to expect supporters of any clubs to sympathise with a rival player. For evidence of that, just re-watch the FA Cup tie between Liverpool and United, in which Evra was booed every time he touched the ball. Fans are more likely to deem that acceptable when their own club all but endorses it. Just “friendly banter” said Dalglish afterwards. Incidentally the same Dalglish who called on the FA to protect Suarez from booing by Wigan supporters only weeks earlier.

Yes, the best managers always protect their players. But there are ways to do so. Liverpool could have still defended Luis Suarez while at the same time acknowledging that on this occasion, he was in the wrong. What Suarez said to Evra may well be acceptable in Uruguay, but it isn’t in the UK. Perhaps Liverpool could have taken some of the blame themselves for not teaching their new player what is acceptable here.

“It would be fairytale stuff” said the Sky Sports commentator, referring to the possibility that Luis Suarez would come on against Tottenham and score the winner. Funny that, I don’t recall ever being tucked into bed as a child with the story of the man charged with racist abuse making a hero’s return.

English football has come a long way in terms of tackling racism over the last few decades. All clubs must continue to lead the way, and certainly the big clubs such as Liverpool need to be at the forefront. However, on this occasion, Dalglish and Liverpool failed to do so.

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Comment by John Thomas on February 9, 2012 at 19:40

I could kiss your mind Jack Harvey.

Comment by WorldClass on February 9, 2012 at 8:42

yes misty he did... the Liverpool fan I copy and pasted is so involved with defending his club and manager he is justifying mild racism... in the same way he probably justifies Carroll £35m price tag as "potential" and Downings £20m price tag as "experience"... Probably in a similar way to how he justifies Gerrard punching a man because "Gerrard want his song on"... 

There is a cocoon around SOME Liverpool fans at the mo and I don;t thin theu quite understand the seriousness of what has gone on and just how slippy a slope it is... Suarez making silly comments and very quickly gone to fans being arrested from racially abusing players to several hundered fans thinking its ok to sing mildly racist chant from the stands...

Comment by redmisty on February 8, 2012 at 13:24

Roy Keane should have got 4+ game ban for intending to break Hangelaand's leg and not the average 3 game ban which comes with all red cards etc etc.

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I know this is not strictly relevant but, if I recall correctly, Keane was banned for 7 matches for that challenge - 3 games for the initial red card and a further 4 when he admitted it was intentional.

Comment by WorldClass on February 8, 2012 at 8:43

lol Scott, I know and he has the gall to suggest I struggle to comprehend even the most simple ideas... I told him he was making no sense but I was told that i was avoiding the debate... lol I love the way he has obviously wrote the post and the edited it with big words after...

Comment by WorldClass on February 8, 2012 at 8:10

Oh and yes I do think its a sad state of affairs when a some on who has been punished for racism is welcomed back like a returning hero... Kenny in my mind now will always be a pathetic little man who put one man ahead of a huge social problem... a man who could not see the wood for the tree's and man who has disgraced football and his own football club for his childish and stubborn stance on this... Once Suarez admitted saying it, it was argument over, hands up and take it on the chin time, oh no not Kenny, King of the Kop, the fans chosen leader, the man who can do no wrong in the eyes of LFC Fans... the man who has by default let a whole new generation of Liverpool fans the mild racism is ok because i called it "Banter"... 

So in a way i hope Kenny stays at Liverpool, as the fans fully back his master plan to destroy Liverpools reputation on and off the pitch... Can't wait for Stevie G's next hissy fit...

"Och No, Stevie did ney wrong... the wee man ran straight inteh his fist" oh hang on... that might of already happened....

Comment by Scott Tracy on February 7, 2012 at 17:08

World Class, I tried to make sense of that but ended up losing the will to live. Clearly your correspondent is not one of the world's clearest thinkers.

Red Indian, I think there are many sensible Liverpool fans but there's a significant minority that sets the tone. My only slight argument with the OP is that while his title "Kenny Dalglish is losing credibility" is spot on, I don't think it's simply due to the Suarez incident which is implied in the posting. I think Dalglish has become wrapped up in this "the world hates us and we're never wrong" mentality and it's affecting his judgement. It's also affecting the way he deals with the media and probably with anyone else he comes into contact with. If he doesn't sort himself out he'll become toxic  and will never work again outside Liverpool, which would be a shame for a great footballer and someone I used to think was a good bloke.

Comment by Red_Indian on February 7, 2012 at 16:42
Scott Tracy
Obviously the sensible (if there are any) Liverpool fans are ashamed of his actions and interviews and his constant defending of racism. So that probably explains why none of them have dared to comment or disagree. I do not think there was anything that the op said that should have been disagreed by anybody since it was spot on.
Comment by WorldClass on February 7, 2012 at 16:30

Here is a response from a Liverpool fan when I suggested the same thing...

This is, at times, ridiculous. Due to your general lack of common sense etc, I shall number points and your reply shall correspond with each numbers. To avoid you missing whole clear paragraphs like you did on Twitter, then claim it was not clear to you. Although your lack of response to Ben Pinsent's thoughts prior to me suggests it will be no use whatsoever- he said Evra did not lie in testimony (so Man U didn't plan any conspiracy, AS THAT WOULD CLEARLY NEED LIES) but was so inconsistent; yet you respond to him claiming he thought United coulda planned it.

1) I commend your rare, stunning show of comprehension when you said "several hundred" and not claimed it was thousands. However, the fact it was less than a thousand, in your opinion, shows it is less than 1/45 of the crowd. Bear in mind you have a few thousand going for it with Glory Glory Man United, with the rest alternating it between boos and YNWA. No matter what pitch side mics heard, there is a good possibility a 60 year old man was in a position away from such idiots with too weak hearing to catch the racist chanting. So when he referred to chanting as "banter", he was probably meaning the "Lying b******" chant that was apparently the most common one.

2) In relation to the previous point, I would like to discuss your ignorance of the fact I am completely aware (my awareness is shown here  https://twitter.com/#!/lfcsi96/status/165182156870660096 ) racism occurred at Anfield during that game. Your lack of absorption of this awareness is shown here: https://twitter.com/#!/WorldClassAV/status/165748388212654080. I WAS DAMN WELL ASKING FOR PROOF OF ENOUGH FANS FOR KENNY TO DEFINITELY HEAR, NOT DENYING THE FACT RACISM DID OCCUR. Your claim conflicts my views. You either do not possess the mental capacity or are too devious to guage my beliefs and make sure your tweets do not question them. My basic point was not a lot chanting= Kenny possibly didn't hear. Therefore his post match interview cannot show he was aware of it. The man is not racist and discourages abuse, due to his experiences in the Old Firm derby and with John Barnes. This, in conclusion, shows you're a bit dippy to question Kenny's post-match comments with me on Twitter when anyone with a shred of common sense would see he may not have heard the "several hundred" over 44,000 screeching fans. I am bloody furious you have tried to use this logic to  wrongfully indict me as a borderline racist who condones the abuse of Evra. When in fact I was enlightening you with the idea that Kenny's may not have been referring to racist chants as "banter" because he may not have heard them (an entirely possible scenario!).

3) You typed "Suarez may have been a mistake, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't have been punished." Totally agree. However, a mistake should not be punished as heavily as an intentional attack eg Reading player was charge with racial attack and got 8 games, like Luis. In another scenario, Roy Keane should have got 4+ game ban for intending to break Hangelaand's leg and not the average 3 game ban which comes with all red cards etc etc. It is the basic foundation of any constitutional framework, sporting or legal.

4) Ben Pinsent commented on Monday about the likelihood of Evra being boo'ed as he was racially abused (and concluded it was zilch & he was boo'ed for gaping inconsistencies in his FA statements). However much the claim is perpetuated, there is no proof of any abuse. No aggression while he said the word relating to race picked up by cameras to suggest he meant it in a derogatory manner.

I look forward to your reply.

(I haven't replied, in my opinion

Comment by Scott Tracy on February 7, 2012 at 16:22

Any Liverpool fans care to comment? We're all boringly agreeing with each other here, except that I think Dalglish's recent unpleasant attitude is about more than just the Suarez incident; it's  the whole "self-pity city" thing.

In fact, the Suarez business is a symptom of that. While the rest of the world, and especially anyone who bothered to read the extremely well-written judgement, accepts that Suarez used some unacceptable racist terms although not in a racist way but was punished accordingly, LFC fans see it as yet more evidence of the world being against them. It's no different from the idiots on Twitter who claimed victimisation when Scott Parker's stomach attacked Suarez's boot. All sensible people see a definite yellow card, if not a red. The scousers (and Kenny) see yet more injustice.

Comment by redmisty on February 7, 2012 at 13:30

Dalglish's comments were out of line, it's time those in charge of the club had a severe word with him. 

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I actually think it's time the FA had a word with him. It's long overdue in fact.

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