If Liverpool come calling ... you answer
Why Anfield's lure remains irresistible
As Brendan Rodgers dumps Swansea for Liverpool, Peterborough United chairman Darragh MacAnthony says he'd have been a fool to do otherwise.
Finally Liverpool FC has hired their new manager and by all accounts like the Mounties, they have got their man.
Brendan Rodgers has signed a 3-year contract to take over from King Kenny in what is what some see as a toxic job.
I will be brutally honest with everyone when I say that I was astonished to first hear that Brendan had in fact turned down the opportunity to speak to the Liverpool owners a couple of weeks ago. I actually saw it as a sign of a lack of ambition on his part and maybe some tentative fear of competing with many other ‘names’ that were in the frame for the job.
"This is Anfield; this is Liverpool Football Club; one of the biggest brands in the football world"
I appreciate there are those who say that it's not the job it used to be; that following King Kenny would be an impossible task; that it's become almost a poisoned chalice; that it needs a bigger name then a Rodgers, a Martinez or a Lambert.
As a Liverpool fan, as a football fan, as a chairman of a football club my response to the above would be a blunt: "Are you ****ing kidding me?"
This is Anfield; this is Liverpool Football Club; one of the biggest brands in the football world; a club with more league titles then any other English club bar Manchester United, a club with more European Cups than United and Barcelona. I don’t care who you are, if Liverpool come calling, you answer the phone and you take the meeting unless you are Jose Mourinho or Sir Alex Ferguson.
"By playing hard to get, he seems to have secured the job on his terms"
If Liverpool had approached me about Darren Ferguson and paid his hefty ransom - sorry release clause - I would have driven him to Miami myself to meet with their owner without giving it a second thought! This doesn’t mean I want to lose my manager, but at the same time I am not naïve enough to expect my gaffer to turn down that kind of opportunity.
Now back to Brendan and what I suspect was a form of kidology on his part when first turning the chance down to talk with Liverpool.
He was obviously making it clear that he was not going to be one of ten people up for the job and by playing hard to get, he seems to have secured the job on his terms from the get go. For me he is a perfect fit for this once dominant force in world football.
"I, for one, am very happy that a young British manager is to be given the chance to manage an historically great club like Liverpool"
He is young, British/Irish; has incredible pedigree on the coaching front; plays the game in what I call ‘The Old Liverpool way’ as demonstrated by Swansea’s style of play which graced the Premier League season just gone; has worked his way up by starting in one of the toughest leagues in Europe - the Championship; and above all has produced these extraordinary results on a shoe-string budget compared to the one facing him at Anfield.
I, for one, am very happy that a young British manager is to be given the chance to manage an historically great club like Liverpool as opposed to another Spanish, French or indeed Portuguese manager as has happened far too many times in the past. I have met Brendan Rodgers and have had a drink in my office with him and have to say that Liverpool Football Club could not have hired a more genuine, down to earth, intelligent, classy character then their new gaffer.
Enjoy the ride Brendan!!
One last thing, the owners of Liverpool should forget about all those names in that hat for a ‘sporting director role or director of football’ and break the bank to bring in Graham Carr from Newcastle immediately. Now that would be the signing of the summer for sure!
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Who should win Premier League manager of the year?
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- Brendan Rodgers
- Tony Pulis
- Steve Bruce