Bob Paisley quotes

"I said that when I took over that I would settle for a drop of Bell's once a month, a big bottle at the end of the season and a ride round the city in an open top bus!"

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Bob Paisley in 1950
"Believe it or not the most thrilling experience of my life has nothing to do with football! It was the unforgettable sight of Vesuvius in eruption while stationed near Naples during the war. The most pleasurable experience is football one, and came when I won an Amateur Cup Final with Bishop Auckland in 1939. Though I hope to have a few more seasons still in senior football, I am studying to be a physiotherapist and masseur when my playing days are over. We married men have to look to the future, you know."

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"My uncle was a slaughterman for the Co-op and I used to get pigs' bladders off him to use as footballs in the street."  

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"I was aggressive but I played the game because I loved and enjoyed it. I might have hurt people and I got hurt myself a few times, but not with any malice. When I went on to the field I just wanted to play football. I didn't go out to kick anybody purposely. I just enjoyed playing and if that's aggression, then I'm guilty of that."

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Bob Paisley on the Kop
"The whole of my life, what they wanted was honesty. They were not concerned with cultured football, but with triers who gave one hundred percent."

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"I'd always had an interest in physiotherapy and psychology. The physio side probably stemmed from the knocks I got as a player. I found that valuable later on. It stood me in good stead. If I was pinned down I'd say that was my greatest asset. I could speak to players and give them examples of injuries and how they heal."

Bob joined the 73rd Regiment of the Royal Artillery in World War II. He served with Montgomery's Eighth Army, the so called Desert Rats as an anti tank gunner.
"The battery I was in went to the Far East. I should have gone with them but was transferred to another battery because I was the regimental soccer captain. That was a bit of luck because my unit was captured soon after it arrived and spent the rest of the war in a prisoner of war camp."

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Bob's first season ended in failure; Liverpool only finished second!
"I'll admit, right away, that I am disappointed that we did not have a major trophy to show for our efforts. We were in four and we had a good side, but when you count second place as failure, then standards are becoming fantastically high. We never celebrate second place here."

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Celebrating Liverpool's first European Cup win in 1977
"This is the second time I've beaten the Germans here... the first time was in 1944. I drove into Rome on a tank when the city was liberated. If anyone had told me I'd be back here to see us win the European Cup 33 years later I'd have told them they were mad! But I want to savour every minute of it... which is why I'm not having a drink tonight. I'm just drinking in the occasion." 

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Paisley addressing the crowd from St George's hall after the European win in 1977.
"In the 38 years I've been here, this excels everything. And of course it's the biggest day in Liverpool Football Club's life."

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Bob Paisley showed on more than one occasion that he was a very funny man. Bill Shankly spent his first Saturday afternoon in retirement watching his local home match, Everton - Derby County. Meanwhile Liverpool were playing at Luton and when the press asked Bob what Shankly was doing this particular afternoon, he replied:
"He's trying to get right away from football. I believe he went to Everton."

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"A lot of teams beat us, do a lap of honour and don't stop running. They live too long on one good result. I remember Jimmy Adamson crowing after Burnley had beaten us once, that his players were in a different league. At the end of the season they were."

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Liverpool faced Crusaders on their way to the European Cup final in Rome in 1977
"I remember the Ulstermen packing their penalty area at Anfield and making it extremely difficult for us to find the space to create chances. One of their players lost a contact lens during the game and I told him, 'There's only one place it will be - in the penalty area!"

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On his skipper Champagne Charlie - Graeme Souness
"Graeme tosses up before kick off with a gold plated credit card."

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"Yes, goin' to Wembley and that. It's the only exercise I get, walkin' out there."

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After his 11th visit to Wembley
"I'm surprised they don't charge me rent and rates."

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On the press
"Newspapers remind me of Jaws. They'll consume anything you've got and be back for more the next day."

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In Liverpool Daily Post 21st of April 1983 at the end of his career as Liverpool manager
"I have always preferred to liken the championship to a marathon. You have to know how to start the race, how to take the strain when problems come along and to make sure you don't give any potentially dangerous rivals an advantage. My policy is to ideally have five or six men around the age of 26, a couple of youngsters, a couple round the 28 mark and one or two in their 30s. But the nucleus of the team should be experienced and not too old.

You don't just look at the calendar. The medical side is an important yardstick. Our two over 30s are Phil Neal and Kenny Dalglish. Phil is the type of player who doesn't often get injured. Kenny takes more knocks than the others, but he is very strong. They have been outstanding from a stamina point of view as well as in skill. They have kept going as well as anyone. But they still need that help from the younger players."

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"Some of the jargon is frightening. They talk of "gettin' round the back" and sound like burglars. They say "You've got to make more positive runs" or "You're too negative". That sounds as though you're filling the team with electricians. But people talk like this without real depth or knowledge of what they're really talking about."

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"There are five things generally accepted to be necessary to make a footballer: skill, strength, stamina, speed and flexibility. You have to bear these factors in mind when you are putting together your training programme. The whole scene is a stamina test, a marathon race. Strength has to be developed from the start. You build that up, giving the player a higher resistance to things. Skill comes next, developed with a constant repetition of pattern. Speed comes after you've run them in. Then you start to get them stretching out. Flexibility is important, and we probably suffer in this country because of our climate. It's a well-known fact that players performing in warmer climates have a wider range of movements."

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"People who sit in the stands perhaps don't realise the extra pressure exerted by the emotional side of the game. It's not easy to cope with and it's quite possible to become drunk on four ounces of wine gum!"

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"I just hoped that after the trials and tribulations of my early years in management, someone up high would smile on me and guide my hand. My plea was answered when we got Kenny Dalglish. What a player, what a great professional!"

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"The secret is that our Liverpool team never know when to stop running and working. At Anfield we have always believed in players supporting each other and concentrating on not giving the ball away. You can't go charging forward all the time, willy-nilly. You must have patience, and this is where we can play the Continentals at their own game."

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Bob Paisley on the Liverpool's third European Cup victory:
"It was a very physical first half and some of the Real Madrid tackling was outrageous, to say the least. But at the same time they had players of real quality. We started quite well but we were upset, probably, by some of the tackles. It was a triumph for our character once again. We started with three players - Dalglish, Thompson and Alan Kennedy - short of match practice, and Souness was hurt shortly after the kick-off. I'm sure Real didn't begrudge us our victory. I was so proud to be the manager of the first British club to win the European Cup three times."

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A simple view of the famous Boot Room
"We have a marvellous backroom team at Anfield who share the work-load wonderfully well. No club has a more able and closely-knit staff than ours. The Anfield boot-room has become legendary, and we have a full and frank exchange of views in there in a leisurely atmosphere every Sunday morning. It's just like popping down to the local."

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A more detailed view of the famous Boot Room
"It started initially with Joe and I as somewhere we could talk and air our views and, on match days, as a place to have a drink with visiting managers and backroom staff. We tried to win every game, but no matter how the match was, we liked to relax afterwards and have a drink with the opposition. Just talking about the game is a most interesting aspect of football. On Sunday mornings we'd go in and talk about the Saturday game. There were differing opinions and disagreements and everyone put their oar in. But it was all done in the right manner. We liked everyone to air their views and you probably got a more wide-ranging discussion in the Boot room than you would in the boardroom. But nothing spilled out of there. What went on was within these four walls. There was a certain mystique about the place, which I also believe there should be about the dressing room. What's said in there should, by and large, be private too."

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"This club has been my life. I'd go out and sweep the street and be proud to do it for Liverpool FC if they asked me to."

"Other people have earned more money than me in football but no-one has enjoyed it as much as me."

"In my filing cabinet of my Anfield office I have built up a collection of desk diaries for each season in which all sorts of details were noted, ranging from weather conditions for a match in September to the fact that a certain player was late for training one day in March. Nothing can be discounted as unimportant."

"I love the city and the people here. I've been with them for many years and I fought alongside them. Ninety per cent of the regiment were from the Merseyside area. So I got to know the Liverpool character. From a psychological point of view, that was a big asset. I've had a fair time to judge the Liverpool people and I think they're tremendous."

"Its not about the long ball or the short ball, its about the right ball."

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"Mind you, I've been here during the bad times too - one year we came second."

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After the 7-0 win vs Spurs
"This result won't help us next week. In fact, we'd rather have brickbats than praise. We seem to thrive on that sort of thing."

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On possibly the biggest stars he ever had
"Kevin was quicker off the mark, but Kenny runs the first five yards in his head."

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Bob Paisley on Joe Fagan
"You may have found me mean and thirsty in my search for trophies, but the bad news is the man who is taking my place is hungrier than me. Fagan's the name and I don't think he'll need any help from the Artful Dodger!"

Sir Bob quote

"Kevin was quicker off the mark, but Kenny runs the first five yards in his head."

Bob Paisley on the biggest stars he ever had

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