Brendan Rodgers' Lack of Faith In His Signings Is Worrying
Brendan Rodgers’ two and a half seasons at Liverpool have been up and down to say the least, but one consistency has been present throughout his entire time: the stream of new faces the Northern Irishman has brought in to try and lift the club to Premier League glory.
However, Rodgers has never seemed to be truly sold on many of the 25 new faces he has bought and this is starting to become a worry for many with so many underwhelming performances this season. So why does Rodgers seemingly lose faith in his signings or not stick by them?
Liverpool have spent £212 million to back their manager in the transfer market but looking at the players, it would be fair to say that only around £69 million of his signings can be considered first choices now – Daniel Sturridge (£12 million), Philippe Coutinho (£8.5 million), Mamadou Sakho (£15 million), Simon Mignolet (£9 million) and Adam Lallana (£25 million). So where has the other £153 million went and why does Rodgers feel the need to spend this money for bench warmers?
Rodgers has developed a habit of throwing many of his signings straight into the firing line and hoping they pay off. This worked for someone like Joe Allen who was already familiar with the style and system of Rodgers having worked under him at Swansea and thus looked like the Reds had signed a real gem.
However, others like Iago Aspas or Dejan Lovren have struggled to adapt – be that to the Premier League itself or the style of play Liverpool utilise – and their poor performances have seen Rodgers’ confidence in them wane as the fans begin to lament them as the worst thing to happen to the club since Milan Jovanovic was paid £120,000 a week.
There is a school of thought that believes that a quality player should fit right into a team and style because they are simply a quality player but that is not always the case (see Balotelli, Mario) and for many new signings it takes time to understand what the manager wants and expects.
This could perhaps be the explanation for Liverpool’s rocky early season form with so many new names struggling to get to grips with Liverpool’s style. Lazar Markovic was a prime example of a player who struggled to begin with and looked like another flop but is gradually beginning to turn it around despite seemingly not having Rodgers’ full confidence.
Albert Moreno is an excellent full back who looks like he could be the solution to Liverpool’s ever-problematic left back slot but, after a couple of defensive lapses, he finds himself struggling to get in the team ahead of an out of form Jose Enrique and right back (and abuse target) Glen Johnson.
Emre Can looked like a great signing in his fleeting chances in midfield because Rodgers weirdly preferred the much worse Joe Allen. It’s nice to see Can getting the game time he deserves but he’s playing out of position at centre back when he could make a difference in the middle of the park.
Even Mamadou Sakho, the club’s best defender this season, has only just recently got back into the side despite Rodgers seemingly not believing in his ability. It is only recently that many of the new signings are getting themselves into the side and helping the team to pick up some better results.
It seems that Rodgers has some kind of loyalty to many of the players that were at the club before him regardless, in most cases (see Johnson, Glen), of form or performances and often at the expense of his new signings.
In many cases, his signings are simply not up to snuff but that is just bad judgement on the part of Rodgers and not every signing pans out. However, some of the new signings would improve the side but Rodgers does not seem to believe in them and that could prove costly come the end of the season.
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