Liverpool’s highly-rated teenager Jonjo Shelvey has hailed the impact of Kenny Dalglish since the mercurial Scot returned as manager of the Anfield outfit in January.
The Reds were hovering precariously above the relegation zone when Roy Hodgson was relieved of his duties at the turn of the year, but they now go into the final weekend of the season hopeful of salvaging a Europa League spot following a remarkable turnaround in fortunes.
Liverpool have won 11 and drawn five of the 22 games since the 60-year-old's return to the Anfield hot-seat.
And the 19-year-old midfielder paid tribute to the Dalglish effect that has stabilised the club and revitalised a squad that was low on confidence.
“He’s got really good man-management skills, he knows how to get the best out of you, he knows how to get the team motivated,” he told FourFourTwo.
“I think everyone’s got to look at since when he’s come in, I think we were four points off the bottom and look where we are now. So I think the results and the performances speak for themselves about the manager.”
Shelvey, signed form Charlton for £1.7 million last summer, said the senior squad made sure the significance of Dalglish’s appointment was not lost on him or other youngsters at the club.
“Obviously at this club he is a legend,” he said. “I look up to people like your Steven Gerrards and your Jamie Carraghers and they look up to your Kenny Dalglishs.
“They tell you what he is about because they have known him longer than what you have and the whole club was just buzzing.”
Upon his return, Dalglish wiped the slate clean for a team that had been under-performing, meaning opportunities for youngsters such as Shelvey.
Since recovering from a knee-injury in April, Shelvey has enjoyed regular first-team opportunities, making 14 appearances so far this term.
And the starlet is relishing being closely involved with Dalglish and the first team, revealing: “Even when he joins in with the little five-a-sides he is always talking to you and helping you.
"Even though he hasn’t got his legs anymore he has still got a good football brain and he is giving it to us, and I think that has shown with the recent performances and we have started to put three points on the board.”
While the confident youngster enjoys the positive impact of Dalglish’s involved approach to training, he revealed the past master had limited opportunities to show the younger players.
“We’re stronger and fitter than him so we get to the ball before him," he said.
"But you can tell he is still got it – it is good when he joins in because he is the King.”
Shelvey joined Kaka, Nani and other top footballers for the launch of the adidas adiPower Predator.
All the players took on a series of control-based challenges for the adidas "call the shots" event in front of hundreds of fans. Visit www.adidas.com/football for more information.
By David Jamiesoncomments