Liverpool Balls: Brendan Rodgers And The Laughable Anfield Transfer Policy
LIVERPOOL Balls: Can Brendan Rodgers be absolved of blame for signings that haven’t been top-notch?
Dave Kidd writes in the Mirror that Liverpool’s trasnfer policy could have been organised by ‘The Muppets Show’. We loved that TV show, but Kidd means it not to be praise.
So Liverpool are rightly proud of their history and yet owner John W Henry and his Fenway Sports Group are less keen to remember what made the club great – strong managers. Brendan Rodgers does not enjoy the same power as his great bootroom forebears, Shankly, Paisley and Fagan, even though his achievement in challenging for last season’s title ought to have earned him the right to autonomy.
Maybe Rodgers should threaten to resign unless he gets that autonomy?
Liverpool’s chief executive, Peter Robinson, and the Anfield board of directors had grown so used to Bill Shankly threatening to resign as to become blasé about it. A 1967 resignation letter sat in Robinson’s filing cabinet, unretracted.
…when it comes to transfer ‘science’, Liverpool are at the Beaker from the Muppet Show end of the lab. Of the 20 senior players recruited by this committee, only two have been true successes – Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho…
Despite this, Rodgers fashioned a team who were within a Steven Gerrard slip of winning the title. His man-management is outstanding, his playing style thrilling and while defensive frailties have been glaring, he merits the chance to stand or fall by his own recruitments.
Well, he did have Luis Suarez. And new recruit Adam Lallana was in the PFA’s team of the season before moving to Liverpool. The PFA labelled another of Liverpool’s purchases from Southmapton, Rickie Lambert, “fab”.
But is Rodgers really fighting the club’s transfer policy?
The days of the truly all-powerful manager may have died with Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement. Yet Jose Mourinho, Arsene Wenger and Louis Van Gaal are not having players imposed upon them. Neither Ayre, Fallows nor Edwards are true confidantes of Rodgers – and recruitment by committee has failed at Anfield… He deserves better. And if Liverpool’s history is to mean anything, their manager should be free to manage from top to bottom.
But Rodgers is no idle bystander to the comings and goings at Anfield. In May 2013 he stated:
“There is absolutely no way a player will come in here if I don’t want him. I will always be the first person it comes to. That’s not being arrogant, that’s how we operate here and how it works in this country. It’s very clear that anyone we sign will be because I want him here.”
And again in May:
“Obviously, I am involved heavily in the identification of the player. Like any manager I will have the first call on a player and the last call. We will never bring in a player here who the manager doesn’t want in.”
If it the Muppet Show, then Rodgers is as stuffed as the rest of them…