Have Liverpool lost their pull?
As Brendan Rodgers takes the hotseat at Liverpool, there will be many fans questioning his appointment to take the club forward, especially as he is taking over from one of the club’s most loved figures: Kenny Dalglish. Rodgers will arrive from Swansea where he worked wonders in both propelling them to the Premier League and introducing a slick brand of football that was pleasing to the eye.
Liverpool FC have now taken the attitude of ‘out with the old and in with the new’ after the failings of both Roy Hodgson and Kenny Dalglish, and the appointment of Rodgers now indicates a new era on Merseyside. Although many Liverpool fans will be happy with the new man in charge, some will be wondering why the club couldn’t attract a top name to one of the most prestigious clubs in the English game. Well the answer is simple: they are too far off the pace to be considered a top force in European football at the present moment. An eighth-place finish last season was an incredibly disappointing end to the campaign that even saw the power shift in Merseyside as Everton sneaked above the Reds into seventh position. Kenny Dalglish’s side did manage to grab a consolation prize by winning the Carling Cup, but in the end it was a bitterly disappointing season for the Merseyside club. And to add insult to injury, Kenny was given his marching orders after the close season.
When the job became available there was a distinct difference between the names being bandied about by the fans and the ones being tipped by the media. The Liverpool supporters wanted someone with a proven track record at the very top level like Pep Guardiola or José Mourinho, but instead they were met with the striking reality that it was more likely to be someone like Roberto Martínez or Brendan Rodgers who would land the role. As discussions with Roberto Martínez moved further down the line, the majority of Liverpool fans started to understand that this managerial position is not the job it used to be. Gone are the days of Champions League football and regular title challenges; this job now requires someone who is going to start from scratch and bring new blood into the club that could potentially rocket Liverpool back into the position that the club think they deserve to be in.
After lots of negotiating, it is Brendan Rodgers who will be given this task and he thoroughly deserves the opportunity to shine at the next level. He will deliver a great brand of football to Anfield and bring in some very good footballers in the process. He has done this with Swansea already in the Premier League and if he can persuade some of his former players to make the trip to Merseyside then Liverpool could become a very formidable force once again. Rodgers already has the spine of the team in place with Martin Škrtel, Steven Gerrard and Luis Suárez acting as the reliable performers in the side, but Rodgers will have a problem on his hands with players such as Stewart Downing and Jordan Henderson not performing but taking up a big chunk of the wage bill.
When a controversial appointment is made there are always people who will question the decision -and rightly so: at the end of the day it is the fans who pay the absurd amount of money to watch their heroes on a Saturday afternoon. On this occasion though, Brendan Rodgers seems like a clever appointment with the future in mind. He will take full control of everything after refusing to work with a director of football and will bring in the exact type of player that will suit his style of play; so don’t be surprised if Arsenal target Joe Allen suddenly turns his attention to a move to Anfield to work under his former Swansea manager. Rodgers will not only bring a fantastic philosophy with him but he will also produce results as he did at the Swans, and we all know that this is the most important thing in football. The board have made a good appointment in Brendan Rodgers and the fans on Merseyside will be praying that their new man can turn around the fortunes of such a great club.