December 28, 1979
The 91 Football League managers trailing in Liverpool’s jet-stream were yesterday handed the dressing room answer to Anfield success.
Ray Kennedy, one of the club’s midfield stokers, told me: “It’s no big deal. The answer is simplicity.
“We don’t have any magic formula. The whole basis of our game is doing the simple tings well.
“We are told to play the simple ball early, not to run with the ball and not to try and complicate the game. It’s as easy as that.”
But why, I wondered, did big Ray lose almost two stone when he left Arsenal, even though he was an established England Under-23 international?
“It just happened. Nobody told me I was overweight and nobody sent me on cross-country marathons. I don’t think I’ve been asked to run more than 880 yards in one go in training.
“But we work damned hard at doing things the easy way. There is no sign of a coaching manual at Anfield and we don’t theorise about the game.
“Bob Paisley grew up in the game when it was uncomplicated and that is the way he keeps it in our dressing room.
“Our pre-match talks on Fridays are one of the highlights of the week because Bob’s an amusing man and he tends to keep those occasions light-hearted.
“We might go over one or two things we did wrong in the last match, but more often than not all we hear about the next day’s opposition is their line-up.”
But Kennedy makes a very important point when he says: “People must remember that Liverpool’s success has been based on continuity. It has taken years to achieve but the staff as been unswervingly loyal.
“And when you join the club they condition you to become a Liverpool player. It is a special feeling.”
(Source: Daily Express: December 28, 1979)