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Saturday 16 December 2017

Familiar road for Dalglish

Reds boss excited by Wembley return

IT IS 16 years since Liverpool made an appearance at Wembley Stadium, but for Kenny Dalglish it will feel like days of old when he leads his side out on Sunday.

Spring has sprung and the Liverpool manager has booked an appointment for a suit measurement. Dalglish has never known it any other way at Anfield. He will make his 21st appearance at Wembley as either a Liverpool player, manager or both.

Aside from the last half of last season when he was only a caretaker, there has been just one year during his association with the club -- 1985 -- when Dalglish has not appeared in the arena.

Six League Cup finals, three FA Cup appearances, a European Cup final and 10 Charity and Community Shields complete the formidable Dalglish collection, and that is before you mention Scottish internationals or a couple of appearances as Blackburn and Newcastle manager.

WINNERS

You could describe it as the rekindling of a love affair, but Dalglish says he just wants to make the club famous for being "good winners" again.

"A final is only important if you win it," says Dalglish. "It doesn't matter when it is you lead them out, it is going to be a proud moment to lead any club at Wembley.

"The manager should be proud of what the club and team has achieved.

"I don't have any real definitive memory of the games other than the 1989 FA Cup final (in the immediate aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster) because of what it meant to so many other people in the city, but Wembley is a special place for anyone who goes there.

"Obviously for ourselves it was a place which we visited pretty regularly and everybody at the club is trying to get back a bit closer to those days.

"The club wants to be challenging more often than it has been in the past.

"We have still got a huge opportunity in front of us to make the season relatively successful. We've got the Carling Cup final, the FA Cup sixth round at home to Stoke and some really important league matches coming up.

"This could be a decent season for everybody."

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