Brendan Rodgers' five biggest mistakes at Liverpool

The Reds boss is under increasing pressure and most of his troubles are of his own making.


The first area Brendan Rodgers has miserably failed in, not just this season but during his time at Anfield as a whole, is in the transfer market.

Such is the Northern Irishman's poor track record in the recruitment department that there are too many individual examples to cite. Rodgers has spent £215 million during his time at Liverpool - and only two of the 25 players he has signed can be said to have been a success, while even they have their drawbacks (Daniel Sturridge is injury prone and Philippe Coutinho is mightily inconsistent).

The big problem for the Reds boss now is that, when he needs them most, he has no alternative options to resort to. He has backed himself into a corner with his transfer policy.

Defensive coaching

Recent criticism of Liverpool's squad has rightly focused on their lack of options up front and increasingly worrying form in midfield. But an issue that has never gone away during Rodgers' time on Merseyside has been the club's defensive woes.

Clearly, Rodgers is incapable of coaching a side from a defensive point of view. His biggest error on that front, however, is not that shortcoming itself but the failure to delegate in light of it.

Former Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen recently criticised the 41-year-old for sticking to his existing coaching setup this term instead of hiring someone new to prepare for the Champions League. And few could argue with that reasoning. Whether it be Phil Thompson or Sami Hyypia when he was available over the summer, Rodgers should have hired a defensive coach.

No Plan B

Much like his insistence on doing things his own way off the pitch, Rodgers' Liverpool side mirror that exasperating characteristic on it. The Reds have had no Plan B on-field for some time now - and the problems started last season.

When Liverpool needed a 0-0 draw to keep themselves in pole position to win last term's Premier League title, Rodgers went for the only approach he seems capable of adopting: all-out-attack against Chelsea at Anfield. Even when Steven Gerrard slipped - an unavoidable accident - why were all 10 outfield players past the halfway line when a win was not needed?

Since then, Liverpool have suffered from the exact same problem and have simply been exposed more often. Now, it is a weekly occurrence.


For all the good the Northern Irishman has done at Anfield, meanwhile, never has he been firm enough with his players. This campaign, the same old underperformers are given a free pass week in, week out, while Rodgers goes out of his way to paint the picture that he is best buddies with every member of his squad.

One of the very few occasions when Liverpool put in a respectable display this season was in the away Champions League fixture at Real Madrid, when Rodgers was tough enough to drop his first-team regulars. More of that is needed if the 41-year-old is to last the course on Merseyside.

All talk, no action

Above all else, it is Rodgers' attitude in the press that has earned him the biggest external criticism. Comments made about the likes of Southampton and Tottenham, in particular, have been pilloried, while the Liverpool boss's press conferences in general have been another negative of his tenure.

After a bad result, Rodgers often cites bad luck and refers listeners to a confined set of buzz words (intensity, philosophy, etc). Kenny Dalglish was similar during his second spell as Reds boss and there was only one way it was ever going to go.

So, if the Northern Irishman is planning for a long-term Anfield stay, he needs to stop making bold remarks about the likes of the Saints and Spurs and keep his comments strictly Liverpool related.

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