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Dalglish despondent over fixture pile-up

"It is never difficult to distinguish between a Scotsman with a grievance and a ray of sunshine." P.G. Wodehouse might have been looking at a picture of Sir Alex Ferguson or Kenny Dalglish when he came up with that classic aphorism.

Nature likes to keep things in balance. So it should be no surprise us that, just as Sir Alex is basking in a rosy glow of contentment after Manchester United named a stand after him, Dalglish should be feeling particularly grumpy.

The cause of the Liverpool manager’s mood is a harsh piece of fixture scheduling that requires Liverpool to play two matches within 48 hours. Liverpool face table-toppers Manchester City at Anfield on November 27, before travelling to Stamford Bridge for the Carling Cup quarter-final against Chelsea on November 29.

"It is disgraceful in this day and age that players are being asked to play a key Premier League game and then a League Cup quarter-final in London just 48 hours later," Dalglish said. He underlined his discontent by ignoring the name of the Cup sponsor.

The Metropolitan Police might have had something to do with the decision, with a Spurs match and a TUC rally in the city over that midweek period, but Dalglish feels that the Football League should have changed the dates.

As it is, Dalglish has warned Liverpool supporters that he intends to field young reserves for the match against Chelsea. "If the Football League want to devalue their own competition, that's up to them," he said. "They shouldn't then be upset if people use these games to help in the development of young players."

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