Sammy Lee’s expected appointment as Rafael Benitez’s new assistant manager has been confirmed by the club today.
Benitez has been without an assistant manager since Pako Ayesteran’s departure at the start of last season and with first team coach Alex Miller now having left to take up a management job in Japan, Lee comes in as Rafa’s new number 2.
Lee played for the Reds from 1976 to 1986 before working as reserve team coach under Roy Evans and then first team coach under Gerard Houllier. He left shortly after Benitez arrived at Anfield in 2004, allowing Benitez a ‘˜fresh start’ at the time. Lee took up a position with the England national team before becoming Sam Allardyce’s assistant at Bolton and then appointed Bolton boss after Allardyce left at the end of the 2006/07 season. Lee was sacked after just 14 games this season.
A vastly experienced and respected coach, Lee will be welcomed back at Anfield by fans and club staff alike.
Lee told the official LFC website:
“I’ve been away for a while but everyone knows what this club means to me and it’s a great pleasure to be back.
“When a club the size of Liverpool comes in for you and when a manager of the magnitude of Rafael Benitez wants you then you can’t say no. When I found out they were interested in me I was really thrilled.
“After the sabbatical I’ve had I just wish the season was starting tomorrow, but the players have had a long, difficult and demanding season and they need to get away and get their batteries recharged.
“I’ve been around Melwood this morning and seen a lot of old faces but a lot of new faces as well. I’ve shook hands with everyone and introduced myself. There are some great people here and I can’t wait to get working with them. It’s so nice to be back.”
“I think the club has made great progress over the last few years and they were so close to having a great season this time around. Hopefully we can keep improving and get to where we all want.”
Manager Rafa Benitez told lfc.tv:
“We are very pleased to have brought Sammy back to Liverpool because he is someone who knows the club really well. He also knows about the passion of the club and about the standards that we set here so that will make it much easier for him to settle into his new role.
“But we have not brought Sammy back simply because he used to play for the club and used to work here as a coach. He is a very experienced and very well respected coach in his own right and his reputation in football made him the stand out candidate when we knew we were looking for a new member of our coaching staff.
“He will add something different to what we already have and it will be good to work with him. I already have a good relationship with him and I will be looking to build on that in the weeks and months to come.”