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Four more years, Brendan

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Brendan Rodgers manager of Liverpool smiles before the Barclays Premier League Match between LiverpoIt’s become a bit of a cliché to refer to a manager as a safe pair of hands. It’s understandable as to why the phrase has such a negative connotation with Liverpool supporters; in 2010, Roy Hodgson was declared a “safe pair of hands” who would “steady the ship” for the club as we struggled with our crippling financial debt.

We all know how that turned out, but with the news that Brendan Rodgers will sign a new four year deal once the season’s over, I was as delighted as every other Liverpool fan. For the first time since Rafa, I feel confident and assured in the quality of our manager to take us to the next level and have us competing year after year. I feel like we’re safe with him. Despite the negative connotations, I believe that Rodgers is the safest pair of hands this football club could wish for.

I remember when Rodgers began his first season at Liverpool a year ago, he was greeted with a lot of cynicism. His critics deemed him a snake oil merchant; he was just the latest person to try and copy tiki-taka, the latest fad in football. He didn’t help himself with his David Brent-isms either (although I loved them still). However, to take us from 7th to 2nd and if we’re lucky enough, maybe even the league title, in the space of a season is nothing short of masterful.

Rodgers has proved himself a remarkable and flexible tactician – capable of changing personnel and formations so often that rarely does the opposing team have any idea how we’re going to line up – and a brilliant man manager. He has turned Luis Suarez from a scorer of great goals into a great goal scorer – the importance of which cannot be undersold – and given Daniel Sturridge a platform from which he can truly express himself and prove himself to be the 20-goals-a-season striker that many doubted he could be.

He turned Jordan Henderson from an underwhelming expensive signing shot of all confidence into one of the integral cogs in a team challenging for the title and it’s been well documented how much Raheem Sterling has improved over the past 6 months.

At the beginning of the season, I would have been okay with a 5th place finish as long as we were still in the race for top 4 until May. To now have a chance at winning the league with a game to go is something no one could ever have expected. No other manager could have done it; not Wenger, not Pelligrini and not Mourinho (Moyes probably would have relegated us).

I wouldn’t swap Brendan Rodgers for any other manager in the world right now. I feel entirely comfortable in placing the future of my club in his hands. Four more years, Brendan. And hopefully many more.

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Drummer, gamer and football fanatic. I love to write about Liverpool and spend most of my time thinking about the mighty Reds. That or Game of Thrones.

12 comments

  • matt helm says:

    Good article Josh. Have to say I agree with you. Especially like your references to Rafa and Moyes.

  • stevie says:

    I agree and think he will do well over the next few years. However, the memory of the last two games will take some erasing. He will realise he needs to curb his attacking intent and grind out results sometimes. If he’d done that against chelsea and the last 15 minutes against palace we would have it in our own hands. Instead we need a miracle. He will learn though

    • Josh Atkins says:

      I think a simple upgrade in defensive personnel should solve a lot of those problems. We’ve shown ourselves capable of grinding out wins plenty of times this season, like our first 3 games that we won 1-0, plus that narrow 2-1 over Sunderland last month!

  • Diego 'Digger' Souness says:

    Rodgers tried to sell Hendo to fulham in his first transfer window. He had no choice to play the lad because his own signings Allen, Alberto & Sahin were SH!T. End OF.

    • Josh Atkins says:

      While obviously you have to question Rodgers where Sahin was concerned, I’m not sure how responsible he is for Alberto. From what little you hear about him, it sounds as though he wasn’t quite there mentally. Joe Allen has stepped up this season and become in an important member of the squad though, but he can improve further.

      I don’t think you can blame Rodgers for trying to get rid of him though at first. He’d had a pretty poor first season which had shot his confidence to bits, he showed very little signs of becoming the player he is now. He really had to prove to Rodgers that he could sort himself out.

      • Diego 'Digger' Souness says:

        So whose responsible for 8.5m Alberto? The tooth fairy? Alberto, Borini, Aspas & Allen cost a combined 40m, those 4 made no real tangible contribution to this season. Thats a lot of money wasted.

        • Josh says:

          Well there is the transfer committee that decides on a lot of signings without necessarily getting Rodgers’ permission. It’s hard to know how much influence either party really has over the other.

          Allen’s made a very real contribution this season, particularly in the second half. Aspas has been a flop, Alberto was a very promising teenager who apparently doesn’t have the mentality to make the step up. It’s hard to know stuff like that before you sign a player. Borini’s had a decent season on loan, hopefully he’ll be able to come back and make a better contribution than Aspas next year.

          Either way, no manager gets 100% of his transfers right. For every success there will always be one or two failures, you’ve got to cut them some slack every once in a while.

  • martin says:

    No doubt he has transformed this squad & results this season, when looking at the bigger picture though the Mancs & Arse were really the pits this year & Chelski were off colour too.Credit to B.R he has taken a bit of stick from fans from the start & it still continues with some. Every Manager buys 1 or 2 duds & when you consider the strides we made this year & C.L. so important ,he has over acheived with a weak squad i.m.o.so its a learning curve for him too,a couple of shrewd transfer moves needed to enhance our best position in years & cement our progress for next season. .Come on Liverpool.

  • Jack says:

    Give him an addition two and that’s a total of three. No manager should get more than that.

    • Josh says:

      Personally I think four’s the limit, but you’re right Jack. It’s dangerous to give a manager too long a contract; look what happened with Moyes and Pardew…

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