Shankly's arrival

Liverpool’s chairman TV Williams issued the following statement on 1st of December 1959:

"Mr Bill Shankly, manager of Huddersfield Town was last night appointed manager of Liverpool Football Club in succession to Mr Phil Taylor, who resigned on November 17. He has accepted the position, but has agreed to stay on at Leeds Road for another month before coming to Anfield in the early days of the New Year, unless circumstances permit an earlier release."

Few could imagine what impact this man would have but the Daily Post reporter knew there was something special on the way:

"The new manager’s confidence and firm resolve are infectious. Nobody can be in his company for more than a few minutes and not realise that here is rare driving force who will not spare himself no pains to get the job he has in view. The players will find him fair, friendly, and always willing to help and advise, but in return he will demand a high price - the last possible ounce of effort each player is able to give."

Circumstances did permit an earlier arrival to Liverpool than in the New Year and on the 14th of December Shankly arrived for good. Shankly declared his vision for the club: "I am very pleased to and proud to have been chosen as manager of Liverpool FC, a club of such potential. It is my opinion that Liverpool have a crowd of followers which rank with the greatest in the game. They deserve success and I hope, in my own small way, I am able to do something towards to help them achieve it. I make no promises except that from the moment I take over I shall put everything into the job I so willingly undertake."

The press loved his demeanor and the Liverpool Echo was under his spell: "Quite a character this new Liverpool manager is, Bill Shankly whose face might just as well find a place in any Stadium album as in the hall of fame as a Preston and Scottish international half-back not so many seasons ago. The thing that most impacts you about him is his burning zeal for good class football and for supreme fitness. As he says: ‘Anyone who isn’a fit canna play fitba and he’s not much use for anything else.’ This man if my reading of him is correct is a disciplinarian, a go-getter, a hard-hitter and someone who has enough confidence in himself to come here and say 'Never mind about a contract, give me the team and leave the rest to me.'"

Shanks quote

"We were staying and playing in Belgium one time, and this night Chris Lawler and I had gone to a casino just opposite the hotel but the rest of the lads had gone down to the village for a drink after the game. At twelve o'clock Shanks stormed into the casino and dragged us back to the hotel. We knew he was in a foul mood, and we were up in our rooms, looking down the road, when we heard the rest of them coming back.. there was Gerry Byrne, Roger Hunt, Geoff Strong, Tommy Lawrence, Gordon Milne, all singing and kicking a few beer cans along, that sort of thing. There was a small playground in front of the hotel and they were mucking about on the swings. We knew Shanks was waiting downstairs, so we tried to tell them to quieten it a bit, but they didn't pay any attention. Too far gone for that! It was about half-past one, and they came falling into the lobby, shouting and bawling, and Shanks was so flabbergasted he didn't know what to do or where to start, and of all people he picks on Cally. 'You, Callaghan... ', he says, and you can see he's reaching for the right thing to say. 'You... I'm going to tell your wife on you!' Everybody just collapsed!"

TOMMY SMITH

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