As Liverpool supporters around the world were celebrating the news that The King was coming back to manage their club, the man himself was flying back from the Middle East in readiness to take that job on.
With Liverpool just four points above relegation it was clear to anyone with their eyes open that Roy Hodgson had failed in his task.
The owners had been hoping that Hodgson would have it in him to keep the club ticking over until they found his permanent replacement, but as results continued to be a long way from good enough his comments were making it increasingly difficult to keep him in his post.
They clearly needed a caretaker to step in and run the team until they had a permanent replacement available. There really wasn’t a better candidate than Kenny Dalglish and he was appointed from a distance, on his holiday, but there was only ever going to be one answer from the man who lives for this football club.
As he landed at Manchester airport tonight he was mobbed by reporters and photographers, including the Sky Sports News cameras.
Sky asked him if he had a message for the supporters: “Just it’s a great honour to be asked to come back,” he said, with cameras flashing away noisily enough to almost drown out his words.
Kenny was then quick to send a message out about Hodgson. He didn’t go as far as commenting on Roy’s performances as a manager, but he praised him as a person: “It’s unfortunate circumstances because a very good man with great dignity and integrity has lost his job.”
But of course it goes without saying that Kenny is delighted to have his old job back, short-term or otherwise. With a smile on his face he told the reporter he needed some sleep before he could really get started: “We’ll try our best, I’m going for a kip and we’ll work it out from there.”
Asked how big a job it would be to turn the season around, Kenny, still smiling, still relaxed, said: “We’ll find out.
“I’ve only [just] come off a plane. We’ll find out.”
He was polite to the reporter, but made it clear that now wasn’t the time for the questions: “I’m sure you’ll be well covered, I’m sure there’ll be plenty of information for a press conference, to sit and go through it like that, so we don’t have to do it like this.”
The reporter thanked Kenny, who stopped to shake his hand and wish him “all the best.”
The players are already in their Manchester hotel ready for tomorrow’s match, but clearly Kenny doesn’t have much time to talk to them let alone coach them ahead of that game.
But any player who needs much encouragement to play out of his skin tomorrow is a player who doesn’t deserve that Red shirt. And if there’s one man who can get that message across it’s a man who is one of the lucky few to know from experience exactly what it means to wear that shirt.
Certain sections of the media seem to be in a flap at Kenny’s appointment and Roy’s mutually consented exit. Perhaps there’s a bit of confusion that Liverpool have had the gall to sack a British manager and replace him with, well, a British manager. The stuff some of them are coming out with is embarrassing – for them – and would be extremely annoying for us.
Except we don’t care. We’re not fighting owners off. We’re not trying to tell anyone our manager needs to go. We’re not even fighting amongst ourselves.
We’re not back yet. But there are signs that we’ve got something back that we’ve not had for a long time. Unity, togetherness, harmony. And that’s always been a powerful part of our armoury.
So those who don’t care about LFC or want to see us fail can complain all they like. We’re not interested, other than to have a little chuckle at their bitterness and fear or their attempts to apportion blame where it doesn’t need to even be mentioned.
It’s us against the world again.
As it should be.