KENNY DALGLISH would have been well within his rights to let rip at Fabio Capello yesterday.
After all the England boss has underlined this week that communication isn’t his strong point.
Capello backed Stuart Pearce’s controversial plan to call up Liverpool striker Andy Carroll for this summer’s European Under-21 Championships without even consulting anyone at Anfield.
Then just for good measure Capello took it upon himself to have a private word with Carroll and then issue a public warning about the need for him to curb his social life.
“He needs to improve, to drink less,” Capello said.
“His behaviour now is really important.”
Capello’s claim that a similar chat with Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere was not required due to Arsene Wenger’s experience raised more eyebrows.
However, anyone hoping for Dalglish to hit back at the hapless Italian was left disappointed as the Scot refused to rise to the bait.
He said: “Well, Andy’s never bought me a drink! I’ve been with him at Boyzone concerts and he’s still never bought me a drink.”
The Reds boss is too streetwise to get dragged into unnecessary battles and cold water was poured on the latest club v country row.
An opinion on whether Carroll, who scored his first England goal in Tuesday’s 1-1 draw with Ghana, should play for the Under-21s this June won’t be voiced until the time comes for the squad to be selected.
“We will wait and see if he gets picked first,” Dalglish said.
“Until they are picked there is no point in having an opinion, is there? That might jeopardise something. We will wait and see who he picks.
“Do young players need a rest? Everybody is different. What is beneficial to one might be detrimental to someone else.
“That is why we would rather wait and see what we have to put up with or look forward to before we make any comment on anything. There is no point talking about something that might never happen.
“There is no way I’m going to spend any time worrying about what is going to happen at the end of the season.
“We have got football matches here that are more important than what is going to happen at an Under-21 tournament.”
Dalglish insists he has no problem with Under-21s coach Pearce who declared he wants Carroll to play in the tournament in Denmark before discussing it with the Anfield boss first.
“Stuart Pearce said exactly what you would say,” he said.
“He hasn’t said anything wrong. I’ve got a very good relationship with Pearcey.
“You asked me whether they spoke to us and I said no. I don’t have a problem with that or what he’s said. Have we got to speak to each other before we pass an opinion?.
“I’m not bothered about England, so there is no point harping on about it. I’m not bothered about international football.”
Despite Capello’s ill judged comments about Carroll, the Scot insists the 6ft 3ins frontman has been a model professional since his high profile £35million switch from Newcastle on transfer deadline day.
He said: “Andy Carroll knows what is required of Andy Carroll. He is the most important part of all this.
“Andy has done fantastically well getting back to where he has, with his application and dedication – and also the help he has had from the medical staff. Whatever Andy has done, he has done it very well.
“Whatever is somebody else’s opinion is up to them. But Andy Carroll cannot be criticised in any way, shape or form for what he has done since he has been here.”
Dalglish was relieved that his wish for Carroll to be handled responsibly while on international duty was granted.
Having sat out last Saturday’s win over Wales, the 22-year-old played for an hour against Ghana in midweek and returned to Melwood on a high after marking his second cap with a first goal for his country. It was a smart finish and the first time he had found the net since Boxing Day. Dalglish is hoping Liverpool will reap the rewards of that confidence-boosting strike at West Brom tomorrow.
“It’s a great milestone for Andy to score his first goal, especially at Wembley,” he said.
“It’s a great reward for him as well after his recuperation. It will give him a lift, kick him on further and it’s a great reflection of how he’s got on with his work and how our medical team has worked to get him there.
“Andy’s got a wee bit to go before getting up to match fitness but he came in here for five-and-a-half years, not two months.
“We’ll be patient and when he’s ready he’s ready.
“The 60 minutes he got for England was very helpful in his recuperation and his fight to get back to full fitness.
“The way England treated our players was fantastic: the way they gave Andy the hour because they knew it wouldn’t be beneficial to play him longer, and the way they gave Glen Johnson 45 minutes because he had a slight problem with his Achilles.
“They were very professional and respectful with the way they treated both of our players.”