Every manager has his ups and downs and Brendan Rodgers has rapidly fallen into a chasm of his own making. Those calling for his head are being premature in their phone in’s but the manager has to find a way to start climbing back out of the huge hole he has fallen into or he will find himself out of work very shortly.
Rodgers will be the first to adhere to the “results are everything” mantra but to this casual observer his insistency on picking out of form players is going to do for him unless he changes his approach quickly.
Fans will put up with results going against them if they can see a full blooded effort on the pitch, when that effort dissipates then they have a right to begin to question the method.
Those who are impatiently calling for Rodgers to be sacked would do well to remember that he is (probably) the youngest manager in the Premier League, maybe only Gary Monk is younger and he needs this experience to make him a better manager. When you walk through a storm you need to be able to make it to the other side to be able to do things again differently.
There will either come a point at which Rodgers realises that he is making the same mistakes again and again and he moves to change it or he continues in the same vein and loses his job. If the latter happens he’ll be left to sit at home and reflect on his mistakes and another team will gain an even better manager for his bad experience.
It’s not an excuse to cite the fact that he’s lost his strike force. Lambert, Borini and Balotelli are all more than capable strikers and were regularly playing in attack for their previous clubs. We all know that Lambert can’t hold a candle to Suarez, after all who can? But he is an adequate replacement, he’s an England striker after all and both Borini and Balotelli play for their respective countries in attack so the loss of Sturridge and Suarez is either masking a deficiency in management or highlighting how poor the defence is without those extra goals to convert losses into wins.
“1-0 to the Arsenal” used to be the cry under George Graham and the lack of clean sheets at Liverpool is where the problem stems from.
Today Steven Gerrard misplaced 13 passes. A once mercurial talent is not so much raging at the dying of the light as fading into the darkness. Barely moving out of his own half is doing the whole team a disservice and now is the time for Rodgers to grasp the nettle and either play him in short bursts where he can still be destructive or leave him out of the team altogether. Making that decision is what becoming a top manager is all about.
Glen Johnson’s head has clearly left the club although his body remains. The switch of sides for Bolassie – who was outstanding all match produced instant dividends against the Liverpool player and he has been poor all season, continually carrying the ball too far and providing no end product.
Rather than labour the point – it is obvious to the layman that this system isn’t working. 14 points from 12 games is a horrendous return.
Rodgers needs to show he has the mentality to adapt to a dire situation and come up with plan C or he will be sitting with Tiny Tim at the Christmas table and he is clearly far too talented an individual for that turn of events to unfold.