Assistant Manager Sammy Lee Looks To Have Been Cast Aside
Since the signing of Jordan Henderson, fans of Liverpool have quietly questioned whether he is the calibre of player to rebuild Liverpool into title challengers following the appointment of Kenny Dalglish from caretaker to permanent manager, whilst being backed by Fenway Sports Groups investment.
Jordan Henderson’s move to Anfield from Sunderland, for a surprising fee of £20 million coincided with Liverpool missing out on Blackburn defender Phil Jones who opted to signing for rivals Manchester United.
It was a sense of déjà vu for the Reds, who had already been ousted to the signing of Ashley Young from Aston Villa, by the Premier League champions, for £16 million.
After months of reported pre-contract deal agreed, Sylvain Marveaux chose to sign for Newcastle United rather than Liverpool.
With wingers a priority for next season, Liverpool had already missed out on Young, Marveaux and in the space of 48 hours Liverpool missed out on wide man Dimitri Payet, who opted to remain in France while Sunderland signed Connor Wickham under the radar.
Now assistant manager Sammy Lee has left Liverpool, yet no word from the Reds has been spoken, leaving the reasoning behind the departure unclear.
The decision to leave from Lee’s part feels reminiscent of how Ray Wilkins was ousted out of Chelsea midway through last season. Perhaps it's exaggerating to suggest, but with potential signings choosing against coming to the club the wheels may be coming off ahead of a highly expected season.
Since been brought in by then manager Rafael Benitez in 2008, and remained at Liverpool during Roy Hodgson’s brief appointment and the remainder of last season.
Many felt the trio of Lee, Dalglish and Steve Clark was fundamental for the resurgence of Liverpool, yet it was Dalglish and Clark that were the ones receiving the plaudits.
Midfielder Lee spent the mid '70s to the mid '80s at Liverpool and became a regular under Bob Paisley. Injuries, however, took their toll on Lee and he soon left Liverpool for stints at Queens Park Rangers, Osasuna, Norwich and finally Bolton Wonderers.
During his time at Anfield, Lee won three Division One titles, four League Cups and two European Cups.
Undoubtedly a popular figure amongst the club for his passion and personality, the fans will question his departure and fingers may well point towards the stewardship of FSG.
Having had half a season to realise what they have bought into and what is available at their disposal, Lee may well have been a casualty for the future of the club and its long-term prospects.
It would be foolish to suggest Dalglish and Clark had a say in whether Lee’s influence was required in the role of assistant manager.
However, should Clark be instated as Kenny’s right-hand man, many may argue he already was from January onwards, questions will be asked. Yet there could very easily be another explanation to this, a simpler and much more reasonable explanation.
For all we know, and with little confirmation from either party we know very little, Lee could decide to take up a managerial role elsewhere.
Nonetheless, for a former player such as Lee not wanting to be a part of what is truly an exciting time for Liverpool Football Club does not ring true. Unfortunately, based upon past events, it seems the hierarchy have spoken.