Apologies for the slightly ‘gossipy’ nature of this article but it would appear that, after weeks of speculation, Liverpool are finally preparing to name Roy Hodgson as the man they have chosen to succeed Rafael Benitez at the Anfield helm.
Hodgson is expected to return from South Africa (where he has been working as a pundit for the BBC) later today to finalise his move, and many sources are speculating that the veteran Fulham boss could be sworn in at Liverpool as early as tomorrow – though most reports are suggesting that an announcement will not be forthcoming over the weekend unless ‘developments progress rapidly’.
Hodgson, who is six months into the twelve-month rolling contract he signed with Fulham in December of last year, is understood to be currently discussing the key issue of who will make up his backroom staff at Liverpool, with the 62-year-old apparently keen to bring his assistant at Fulham, Mike Kelly, with him to Merseyside – although the Cottager’s may play hard-ball over relinquishing Kelly.
The news come days after Hodgson insisted live on the BBC that he was ‘happy at Fulham’ after being pressed about his immediate future by fellow pundit Alan Hansen, but with the aid of retrospect it seems the response was a ‘non-committal’ rather than the ‘statement of intent’ it was first taken to be.
Although we are still very much operating within the realms of conjecture, when the BBC ‘understands’ and the ‘odds have been slashed’ – it’s usually a pretty good indicator of things to come…
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In related news, Sven-Goran Eriksson (who is currently in temporary charge of the Ivory Coast’s World Cup campaign) has emerged as a shock contender to replace Hodgson at Craven Cottage – should the Fulham boss leave to take over at Liverpool.
However, both Mark Hughes and Tony Mowbray (who are both out of work after being jettisoned by Manchester City and Celtic respectively) are also rumoured to be on Fulham chairman Mohamed Al Fayed‘s shortlist of candidates.