Special K salutes King Kenny's achievement

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Kevin Keegan has hailed the work of Kenny Dalglish at Liverpool, suggesting only the Scot would have been able to engineer the change in fortunes seen at the club over the past ten months.

'King Kenny' took over from Roy Hodgson at Anfield in January, and after guiding the Reds to the cusp of European qualification last term, his team are currently well placed to challenge for a top four spot in the Barclays Premier League.

"I think only he could have come in at the time and lifted the club. They needed someone who the fans believed in. Only Kenny could have come in and made that immediate impact because of his knowledge of the club," Keegan told the official Liverpool website.

"For example, when I went to Fulham, I had to learn about the club - but you don't need to learn about anything if you've played and managed here before. I wasn't surprised to see him return because it's in your blood.

"He was at the club and he was seeing things - things he knew probably weren't quite right or that if he was making a certain decision, it would be a different one. So he had that big advantage of being there and getting an overview of all of the club. When he came in, he hit the ground running."

Liverpool fans are desperate for a return to the Champions League, with no European football this term and a difficult spell in the Europa League last year.

Keegan believes it will serve as an advantage for the Merseysiders though, and whilst Dalglish has taken the League Cup as a replacement by picking consistently strong squads for matches against lower league opposition, the freshness of his players could prove pivotal in the later stages of the league season.

"Fourth or third. The reason I think they've got a great chance is because they're not in Europe, although it seems to me as though Kenny is treating the Carling Cup as Europe by putting strong sides out," Keegan replied when questioned on a finishing position.

"Not getting into the Europa League was a big plus for Liverpool, I think, and why I think they have a chance of getting into the top four."

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