The number of men who achieve greatness on the pitch and in management is limited to some of the most respected names in the game. Cryuff, Clough, Beckenbauer and standing alongside them is ‘King’ Kenny Dalglish.
As a player he scored 30 goals for Scotland (sharing the record with Denis Law) in 102 caps. Domestically he started his glittering career with Celtic, winning four league titles, four Scottish Cups and the League Cup before being tempted to join Liverpool in 1977 by manager Bob Paisley.
As a player in Liverpool he enjoyed incredible success at home and across Europe, winning the European Cup three times along with six English league championships and numerous domestic cup competitions.
Birthplace Glasgow, Scotland
Date of birth 04/03/1951
Playing career Celtic, Liverpool
Teams managed Liverpool, Blackburn Rovers, Newcastle United, Celtic, Liverpool
Managing through tragedy on Merseyside
After the Heysel stadium disaster in 1985, manager Joe Fagan resigned and Kenny was elevated to Player-Manager. In his first season in charge, Kenny made history, securing the club’s first ever double of League and FA Cup.
Further league titles would follow in 1988 and 1990. The greatest test of Kenny’s time in the Liverpool dugout would come in 1989 with the Hillsborough stadium disaster. Poor crowd management at an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest would lead to a crush that would claim the lives of 94 people (rising to 97 over time). Kenny drew praise for the way he led the club, organising visits to the injured, attending funerals personally and spending time with bereaved families.
After leaving Liverpool in 1991, Kenny returned to management with Blackburn Rovers where he would lead them back into the top flight for the first time since 1966. Over the next three seasons, Kenny built a side led by the scoring excellence of Chris Sutton & Alan Shearer that won the Premier League title in 1995. A short spell at Newcastle United would follow, most notable for a 3-2 Champions League win over Barcelona and an FA Cup Final loss against Arsenal.
In his own words
Kenny on the role of Liverpool Football Club in the aftermath of the tragic events of Hillsborough.
They supported Liverpool. Now it is the turn of Liverpool Football Club to support them.
Returns to Celtic Park and Anfield
In 1999 Kenny returned to Celtic Park as Director of Football Operations alongside John Barnes as Head Coach. When Barnes was dismissed six months later, Kenny took charge of the first team until the end of the season, leading them to the League Cup, beating Aberdeen in the final.
When Roy Hodgson left Liverpool in 2011, Kenny was placed in caretaker charge before becoming permanent manager in May that year. Kenny had been back in Liverpool since 2009, working as a club ambassador and in the youth academy. In 2012 Kenny led Liverpool to their first trophy in six years, winning the 2012 League Cup, beating Cardiff City on penalties.
His record of success as a player and manager is almost without compare.
Honours as a Manager
Football League First Division
Football League Cup
Football League Super Cup
FA Charity Shield
Scottish League Cup