Why Brendan Rodgers is the Best and Only Way Forward
It has been a shocking week for Liverpool; of this there is no question.
A defeat to Aston Villa in the league would be enough to send the club into a depressed state; such as loss in a cup semi-final has transformed the club and its supporters into a self-destructive inexplicable mess. A mess that, unless careful handled, will pull itself apart before the men at the helm have the chance to give it direction.
This guiding hand is currently Brendan Rodgers, but his wavering sense of direction is being truly questioned by those who only 12 months ago chanted his name like the greats of old.
‘But without top players Rodgers is nothing!’
I have seen the argument that Rodgers success was due to Luis Suarez and the Uruguayan’s departure is the symbol of the Northern Irishman’s ineptitude for the job. Take a second though and wonder what if last season had never happened? Would fans be urging a man out the door when they sat in 5th position – no, no they would not have, especially if he had reached that position playing most of the season without a recognised striker.
‘But that doesn’t matter, because last season did happen, so our standards are higher!’
People also have put forward the idea that last season should be the bar for a club like Liverpool playing at the top of their game; I would not disagree. I would also agree that last season was the very best of Liverpool’s game – so what has changed since then?
Suarez and Sturridge would be the obvious response, yet many would leap straight to a manager who has ‘lost his way’. Before you get rid of the manager, surely you should question the downturn in player performance, aside from players leaving.
‘But Rodgers should have signed top talent instead of signing potential and taking risks!’
The next point in the anti-Rodgers argument is that he has never even tried to sign the type of player Liverpool should be going for. I am not saying for a second that signed Balotelli or Lambert was a good call, particularly the latter, but if you take the time to look at the evidence, it isn’t so damning after all.
Many point at Alexis Sanchez, furious Liverpool didn’t acquire his signature: ‘the perfect player to replace Suarez and Rodgers couldn’t see it’. Let’s consider Sanchez’ transfer; as far as has been reported, the Reds offered more of a fee and more wages than Arsenal, but Alexis choose London – so perhaps getting rid of Rodgers because of his lack of ambition in the transfer market would be a little unfair.
‘But we’re at least as bad as we were under Dalglish and Hodgson, so why should Rodgers get more time?!’
Rodgers inherited a club off the back of an 8th place finish in the league, but with a League Cup to its name; 3 years, a runners up place in the league and potential for Champions League (albeit a slim chance) down the line and many would argue progress hasn’t been made. Yes Rodgers hasn’t won anything in his time, breaking records with that drought. But it would be ludicrous to claim Liverpool have taken steps backwards since the Hodgson/Dalglish era.
‘But there are better managers available right now!’
I believe any Liverpool fans should ask themselves who, realistically is a better option than Rodgers, and would also see Liverpool as a step-up in there career (the best managers don’t take steps down).
‘Klopp, or De Boer, what about them?’
The former coming from recent Champions League finalists, and regular challengers for the Bundesliga title – albeit off the back of a rough season – is probably a little out of Liverpool’s reach. The latter is more of a possibility, but is it really worth risking a manager as yet unproven in a major European league.
So from a Liverpool perspective, it may be worth sticking with a manager who’s plan is still very much in its early stages, before reflex firing him of the back of a trophyless spell…lest we take a step closer to the Roman Abramovic model (minus the money and eventual success).
‘But what if I want Rafa back!’
No. He's not coming back.