King Kenny returns to Anfield helm
For more than a minute, as the flashbulbs popped, and the photographers begged him to look their way, and the journalists waited to ask him their questions, and the press officers glanced nervously, he waited, and took it all in. A few yards away, on the wall at Anfield to his right, as if to emphasise the legendary status he still enjoys, and must now avoid staining, hung an oil painting of himself.
An image of a younger Kenny Dalglish, among a small row of portraits celebrating Liverpool's greatest ever managers.
These were the men who had won the title here. His was the most recent in 1989-90. Memories of the way things used to be.
This was the very room in which he had first signed for Bob Paisley's Liverpool as Kevin Keegan's replacement back in 1977.The room where, in 1991, he had announced his shock-resignation as manager, and walked away, a departure he always regretted, and from which the club has never really managed to recover.
This was the Anfield Trophy Room he did so much to fill. 19 trophies in 14 years he helped to deliver to this treasure trove, as both player and manager.
Now he was back where it had all begun.
It took just a few seconds of his first Anfield news conference in almost 20 years, for Dalglish to show what the club had been missing. He happily chatted away for a further 23 minutes.
His self-deprecating quip that if he lasted until the end of the season he would surely qualify as one of the league's longest serving managers, raised a laugh and immediately charmed the assembled media. Swiftly forgotten were the melodramatic offerings of Rafa Benitez and the tortured ramblings of Roy Hodgson, who departed after only six months in charge.
But if Dalglish intended to prove he was happy being merely a caretaker king, and to play down the possibility of a staying in charge beyond the summer, then he was fooling nobody.
The features may be older than we remember when he last spoke here, but his eyes still glint with the same steely determination and hunger.
Having posed on the pitch with the shirt he wore with such distinction, on a damp Merseyside day, Dalglish lit up Anfield as he spoke of his deep respect for the club he loves and his pride at being asked to help in its hour of need.
But these were not the words of a man content with just four months of duty.
Especially not when Damien Comolli, sat alongside him, admitted the Scotsman had the attributes required to be a contender for the job on a permanent basis and would therefore be under consideration.
In truth Comolli, the club's director of football strategy, could hardly have said anything else on such an occasion. But it served to highlight the dilemma now facing the club's owners.
He may have a Twitter account, but Dalglish is not the tech-savvy, young, statistically-minded, baseball-following manager that Comolli, and owners John Henry and Tom Werner no doubt have their hearts set on for the long-term.
The likes of continentals such as Jurgen Klopp and Ralf Rangnick are a different breed.
But if Dalglish does lead a revival in the league, and continues Liverpool's march towards Dublin and this year's Europa League final, then how can the owners deny him the chance to continue?
And what precisely would need to be achieved for Dalglish's second spell as manager to be regarded as a success?
In appointing the Kop's choice on a temporary basis, the Fenway Sports Group are storing up another big decision, another consultation with the fans, for later this year, but for now the focus is on the present, and a tough away game against Blackpool on Wednesday.
It took just 30 seconds for the romance of Dalglish's return to be put into perspective by Daniel Agger's needless challenge on Dimitar Berbatov to give away a penalty at Old Trafford on Sunday.
But now, at Bloomfield Road, the new manager will discover exactly how hard his job really is. Losing to Manchester United with 10 men in the FA Cup is one thing.
A second defeat of the season to Ian Holloway's pumped-up side would be deemed unacceptable. Dalglish's rescue mission is about to begin in earnest.
How did his his wife Marina feel, I asked, when he announced at the weekend as they holidayed in the Persian Gulf, that he had accepted the job, and would be immediately leaving for England?
"She said yes before I could!" Dalglish joked.
And maybe it was true, because he has always wanted to come back, and to help the club that stress, in the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster, had forced him to leave 20 years ago.
Having been overlooked for the role in the summer by the previous regime, there is genuine unfinished business for him here, and now he has his wish, he must be easier for Mrs Dalglish to live with.
When Dalglish last sat in the Anfield dugout, his team were champions. But the years have not been kind to Liverpool, and now we will discover whether this iconic figure, who has not coached for a decade, has what it takes to succeed where Hodgson, the reigning Manager of the Year, failed. It should be a fascinating journey.
To many Liverpool fans, Hodgson, for all his qualities as a man and attributes as a coach, only served to remind them of how far their club had fallen.
Like the Trophy Room in which he sat once again on Monday, Dalglish instead evokes memories of what Liverpool once was.
And inspires hope for what they perhaps could be again.