Brendan Rogers: This Season vs Last Season
September 07, 2015
With the Premier League season now at an end, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers can look back on a year of trials, tribulations, and disappointment. While this is nothing new in Liverpool’s recent history, it came after a season in which the Reds plundered more than 100 league goals and arguably came within a catastrophic slip of winning the EPL title. With the club now out of the Champions League after just a single seasons’ sojourn, Rodgers will need to conduct a significant rebuilding job if he is to mastermind a recovery.
A Tale of Two Seasons
In truth, both of Liverpool’s last two seasons were shaped in the summer. Two years ago, Liverpool stood strong in the face of Luis Suarez’ posturing, denying the Uruguayan the chance to move to Champions League bound Arsenal. He subsequently led Liverpool’s stunning and goal-laden title charge, hitting more than 30 league goals and forging a deadly forward trio with Daniel Sturridge and Raheem Sterling. Rodgers was not so fortunate during the last preseason, however, as Suarez finally left for Barcelona in a deal worth £75 million.
This has triggered a series of disappointments for Liverpool fans, with Rodgers’ transfer dealings unbalancing the squad and delivering a paucity of quality. Striker Rickie Lambert and the increasingly frustrating Mario Balotelli have scored just three league goals all season, while the injury-struck Sturridge and outcast Fabio Borini have contributed a further five. This lack of firepower has also exposed the fragility of Liverpool’s defence, where £20 million Dejan Lovren has struggled to exert any authority. Even Rodgers’ famed tactical ability and motivational skills have suffered this term, leaving the club bereft of inspiration and leadership.
The Future for LFC and Brendan Rodgers
In the short-term, Liverpool may find that their circumstances deteriorate before they get better. Legendary captain Steven Gerrard has now left for the MLS, leaving a leadership vacuum that the club will struggle to fill. Contract rebel Raheem Sterling also seems likely to formally request a move in the coming days, especially if you believe the words recently attributed to his agent.
Rodgers needs to tackle these issues head on, while also restoring Daniel Sturridge to full fitness, before he can begin to plot a successful league campaign next time out. Only time will tell whether he can a