Kenny hails Spearing’s attitude

The 23-year-old was sent off against Fulham earlier this month

after he cleanly won the ball in a tackle with Moussa Dembele but

caught the Cottagers forward with an exaggerated follow-through.

His sending-off provoked a furious response from his team-mates and

landed the club with a Football Association misconduct charge for

failing to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly

fashion. Spearing’s return adds greater defensive stability to the

squad in the season-long absence of Lucas Leiva, who has been

sidelined after cruciate knee surgery. And Dalglish is delighted to

have the academy graduate’s combative qualities at his disposal

again and sees no reason for the player to tone down his approach.

“There was no maliciousness in his tackle. He was totally focused

on winning the ball,” said the Scot ahead of the Boxing Day visit

of bottom-side Blackburn. “He did win the ball but his momentum

came through and made contact with Dembele. “It was maybe

over-enthusiasm but that is not something you’d complain about in

football – at that age you’d expect him to be. “I’m sure he’ll be

more knowledgeable for his experience but there is nothing he needs

to change greatly. “Everybody’s character is different but

character is what makes you successful – and the wee man has

certainly been successful here. “We don’t intend – or need to –

change the boy’s character. “He just needs to be a bit more mature

and I’m sure the three games (suspension) has taught him that.”

Dalglish said, with a packed festive programme ahead, Spearing’s

enforced rest may turn out to be a positive as he looks to rotate

the squad. “It was disappointing to lose him because he was doing

really well,” said the Reds boss. “He’s served his punishment and

maybe that’s an advantage with the games coming quite quickly. “But

he’s got nothing to prove to us – we know what Jay can do, we know

what he’s about and he’s done very well for us in the past. “There

is no reason to think he’s not going to do well in the future.”

Dalglish, his coaching team and the club’s medical staff will keep

a watchful eye on the players as they prepare for a run of nine

matches in 36 days up until the end of January. But the manager

will not be looking beyond Monday’s fixture as he looks for the

side to get back to winning ways after a goalless draw at Wigan on

Wednesday. “Every game is a pivotal point and for us it’s important

we get as much as we can from every game, whether that comes within

three days or 10 days of each other doesn’t make any difference,”

he said. “We have a busy schedule of games which demands a very

strong squad and I think we’ve got that. “We take every game as it

comes and we look at the last one to see how the lads have

recovered from it. “It’s more poignant now because the games are

coming thick and fast. “The quicker they recover the better chance

they have of playing and not every player recovers at the same time

as everyone else. “The most defining factor is it’s a great

experiment to find out how strong your squad is. “I think we have

got a strong squad and I think we may be a bit fortunate than

others with regards to team selection. “If we can get a little bit

of fortune on the pitch we will get good results.”