Kenny Dalglish turns 70 today.
An iconic birthday for an iconic individual.
Dalglish is synonymous with the city of Liverpool, not just Liverpool Football Club.
To honour Dalglish’s 70th birthday, the Dalglish family has set up the 7Appeal. The fund aims to raise funds to support young families in Liverpool who urgently require baby basics.
Despite being a boyhood Glasgow Rangers supporter, Kenny played for Glasgow Celtic from 1971. In his time at Celtic, he won four Scottish League Championships and four Scottish Cups.
Liverpool broke the British transfer record of £440,000 in 1977 to bring the Scottish forward to Merseyside. The rest is history…
“And then chipped away and we were champions again…”
Dalglish scored the only goal in the 1978 European Cup Final at Wembley in his first season for the Reds. The victory was Liverpool’s second successive European Cup win.
He would go on to win the European Cup in 1981 and 1984, as Liverpool dominated England and Europe. He won six league titles, two FA Cups and four League Cups as a player at Liverpool.
Scoring 118 goals in 355 Liverpool appearances, he is widely regarded as the greatest player to have ever played for Liverpool.
Kenny the Player Manager
Following Joe Fagan’s shock resignation, Dalglish was thrust into the Anfield hot seat. As player manager, Kenny won a further three league titles, as well as two FA Cups. Both the 1986 and 1989 FA Cup Finals were defeats of neighbours Everton, at a time when Merseyside dominated the English game.
Kenny continued to play a playing role, as well as managing, with his playing appearance taking place in 1990.
Dalglish managed Liverpool through the darkest days in the clubs history, following the Hillsborough Disaster. The disaster claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool supporters on April 15th 1989.
The emotional toil of Hillsborough took its toll on Kenny. He and his wife Marina attended as many funerals as possible.
Dalglish resigned as Liverpool manager on February 22nd 1991, following the FA Cup Fifth Round draw with Everton.
Kenny the Manager
Kenny returned to management nine months after leaving Liverpool as the manager of Blackburn Rovers. Dalglish led Blackburn to promotion to the Premier League in his first season (1991-92). He went on to lead Blackburn Rovers to the Premier League title in 1995, winning the title on the last day at Anfield of all places.
Kenny further took up managerial roles at Newcastle United and Celtic.
The King returned to the Anfield hot seat in January 2011 on a temporary basis. Such was his impact at Liverpool, owners Fenway Sports Group made him manager on a permanent basis. League Cup success in 2012 did not save Dalglish’s job, as FSG and Dalglish parted ways.
His second stint as manager was welcome after a messy few years under the previous ownership regime of Tim Hicks and George Gillett. Kenny brought the feel good factor back to Anfield, with a team inspired by Steven Gerrard and enigmatic Uruguayan – Luis Suarez.
Sir Kenny Dalglish
Kenny Dalglish is an icon of British sport. It would not be unwise to say he is the greatest British footballer to ever play the game.
However, Kenny is more fondly remembered for his personality. His services to charity and the City of Liverpool, particularly following Hillsborough.
He was Knighted as Sir Kenny Dalglish in 2018, for services to football, charity and the City of Liverpool.