“Getting Rodgers is a sign Liverpool have been left behind”
There’s something special about the optimism you feel when your club appoints a new manager who makes all the right noises. Many Liverpool fans are very excited about the potential for their club to improve this season with Brendan Rodgers at the helm. But what is it about the former Swansea boss that makes him so appealing? The Life’s a Pitch panel takes a look.
“He’s got this calm persona about him, which is impressive,” says journalist and author Ian Ridley. “Clearly, he wants to play the game the modern way and I think players want to play for him. Liverpool fans will give him time, they always give Liverpool managers time and space to work – unless your name is Roy Hodgson.
“I think Rodgers fits the bill perfectly, except in one area: Liverpool fans still think they’re a massive club that should be challenging for the top two or three; the problem is they’ve been left behind over the past few years and Rodgers is almost a sign of that. They got him from Swansea, not Barcelona or Real Madrid – is he really a fit man for Liverpool? That will be the question.”
If Rodgers is going to make an impact at Anfield, though, he’s going to need to ring the changes to fit in with his style of play, says David Walker of the Sunday Mirror. “I think the principles of how he wants his team to play will be welcomed by Liverpool fans. The feedback I have been hearing over the summer is that Liverpool have around £25m-30m to spend on four or five players, so Rodgers is not going to be buying at the top of the market. You’re certainly going to see more pace out wide: Stewart Downing hasn’t delivered, and Rodgers will be looking for people who can.”
Don’t get too carried away, though, Liverpool fans. Footballer-turned-journalist Adrian Clarke thinks you’ll need to be patient. “What he did at Swansea was remarkable, but it was a transitional phase for the club. It wasn’t just his job, it was something he inherited and developed brilliantly. I don’t think you can expect Liverpool to turn into Swansea overnight. To play with that much fluency, freedom and expression within the squad takes time and I think it’s going to take several months, if not the whole season, before we see Liverpool keeping the ball in the manner that Swansea did.”
Watch the full video discussion by clicking on the play button in the image above.
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