At first his favourite act on saturday afternoon trick was a disappearing act. I remember him coming up to me after his Merseyside derby match and saying that he should have paid to get in because all he was doing was watching the ball past him. In Denmark he had learnt his remarkable skills in isolation. He was probably the sort of boy who spent hours in the family garden playing with a ball on his own. If he had spent those hours practising his technique in the middle of a motorway he might have been prepared for life in the first division.
It took Jan a year or so to come up with a survival plan that would see him go through an English season. He became a more aggressive person. The fans christened him "Rambo" in recognition of the fact. Danes are generally carefree and easy-going types by nature. Jan had fourteen and a half stone to throw around and we had to encourage him to use it.
Certainly when he is allowed the time to play the way he likes, he is a treat to watch. He just seems to flick and jab at the ball and it flies off his foot. Everything he does is so sweet and crisp. He can't get enough of the ball when everything is running for him. He's like a compulsive gambler. No pass is too difficult to try, no shooting chance is allowed to go untaken. He can go trough a ten minute spell when you think he's operating it by remote control. He could go on the stage with his repertoire of party pieces if he ever was short of a few bob. Getting that repertoire to stretch to 90 minutes per game and 60 games per season is the trick that he is bound to find the most difficult to master.
Copyright - Clive Tyldesley from his book "Bob Paisley's personal view of the First Team Squad of 1986-87".
"Bob had taken over from this God-like man Bill Shankly. Bob got used to the job and his association with Geoff Twentyman to bring in talented kids paid dividends and another man who was important to Bob Paisley was Tom Saunders. He confided in him with whom he was going to replace Kevin Keegan with in '77. It transformed the club again. He was never afraid. What I liked about Bob that he was never afraid to break up a winning formula. Whatever he achieved he was always looking to strengthen. We knew we were going to get a new face in pre-season. I signed in October. Ray Kennedy had been brought in the summer as Bill Shankly's last signing. Terry Mac came after me. An established player in midfield, runs ahead of the ball. Then there would be another one before the end of the season, usually before March. That was the pattern every year. Whatever you won you knew somebody was going to come in and take your place. You could either stay and fight or as I saw other people just leave. Joey Jones left when Alan Kennedy arrived. Soon as Ray Clemence knew Brucie was in the frame he was off. Steve Nicol was bought in '81. He was after my shirt. They brought Souness in, the team got better. Lawrenson came in, you're getting better. He used to bring in good people. They were not fly-by-knights which was an expression Bob used to use. They'll be focused."
Phil Neal in an exclusive interview with LFChistory.net