‘It was close once’ – Sven-Goran Eriksson makes Liverpool manager admission ahead of Legends match

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Sven-Goran Eriksson will fulfil a lifelong dream today when he takes charge of Liverpool in the Legends match against Ajax at Anfield, although he could’ve been straddling the touchline at L4 much earlier in his career.

The 76-year-old – who was diagnosed with terminal cancer earlier this year – spoke to the Liverpool Echo ahead of the fixture this afternoon, and he revealed that he had previously been in discussions about possibly becoming Reds manager.

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He said: “It’s okay. What I have done, I have done and I am happy about that. Now it’s over, almost. Almost. This will be the last game, I suppose! So that’s great.

“It’s like a dream. I could never have dreamt about that. When I was a manager, I always dreamt about Liverpool, but that never happened. It was close once; there were discussions once. Many years ago, with a big name in football in Liverpool, not a player, a director. Before that (David Moores).”

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Eriksson didn’t specify at what point during the late Moores’ tenure as chairman (1991-2007) that he was in talks about the Liverpool manager’s job, so it could’ve been him instead of any of Graeme Souness, Roy Evans, Gerard Houllier or Rafael Benitez.

The Swede would end up on these shores in 2001 when taking charge of England for five years, overseeing a hugely talented squad but unable to take them beyond the quarter-finals in the three major tournaments in which he was involved.

After he announced his terminal cancer diagnosis and his childhood fandom of LFC in January, there was immediately a clamour for him to take charge of the Legends team, and that tide of public opinion was duly noted by the club’s hierarchy, who granted him the opportunity.

Even if it’s only for one day, it’s wonderful to see Eriksson getting the chance to live out his long-held dream this afternoon. We hope he enjoys every minute of the experience, and that he can continue to stay strong in his battle against cancer.

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