Expectations are too high at Liverpool, says club legend John Barnes

The former Liverpool winger doesn't expect his old club to challenge regardless of who takes over from Brendan Rodgers.

Liverpool legend John Barnes has called for a lowering of expectations at Anfield to reflect the changing landscape of the game.

The Reds' glory days seem a distant memory yet the expectation that the club should be challenging for league titles prevails, despite not lifting the trophy in 25 years.

Brendan Rodgers was relieved of his duties following the 1-1 draw with Everton yesterday and speculation has been rife as to who his replacement will be.

Jurgen Klopp and Carlo Ancelotti appear to be the frontrunners but Barnes feels Liverpool will be unable to challenge regardless of who comes in.

“If you look at the players Liverpool have, they’re very good, honest, hardworking players but we haven’t got strength in terms of the quality,” he told talkSPORT.

“A new manager coming in now with the harmony, with the expectation, and the positivity behind them can possibly do better [than Brendan Rodgers], but in terms of thinking this Liverpool team have the quality to be first, second or third, quite frankly, is crazy.

“Can Carlo Ancelotti take this group of players on and win the Premier League with Liverpool? No,” he added.

Rodgers brought Liverpool closer to the title than any manager in recent years during the 2013-14 campaign but his sacking is a reflection of the impatience of the modern game.

Losing Luis Suarez, Raheem Sterling and Steven Gerrard was always going to be a blow and Daniel Sturridge’s fondness for the treatment table means the Reds lack real match-winning quality.

Rodgers recruitment record has been his biggest failing however, with the majority of his expensive signings failing to deliver anywhere near enough, and it makes the decision to sack him now – after another big spending summer – a strange one.

Whoever inherits the Liverpool squad will be gaining a solid bunch of players with undoubted potential, but achieving much more than Rodgers managed in his three years there will be a tough ask.

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