12 Apr 2014

'He tells us to...' Coutinho gives 4 reasons why BR is 'one of the best' in the Prem

Since 2012, Brendan Rodgers has wasted big money on a series of players who don't contribute to the cause, but he's also managed to unearth at least two absolute gems: Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge. For me, Coutinho is the Peter Beardsley of the current LFC side, and like Beardo, the Brazilian is one of those players who generates immediate excitement whenever he touches the ball. Rodgers has shown great faith in Coutinho this season, and stuck with him through some periods of indifferent form, and in an interview today, the attacker explained exactly what makes Rodgers a great manager.

'He tells us to...' Coutinho gives 4 reasons why BR is one of the Prem's 'best managers'

Speaking to The Mirror, Coutinho praised the 'happy' atmosphere at the club, and offered four reasons why Rodgers 'is one of the best managers in the Premier League':

1. “He [Rodgers] worries about his players and encourages the best from them".

2. "He worries about the players personally too"

3. "Brendan tells us to forget the excitement and the expectations when we are out on the pitch and to focus on the game".

4. "He tells us try to do our best and not to worry about anything happening around us"

Rodgers' friendly, father-figure approach is a stark contrast to the tough love regime of Rafa Benitez, but there's always a danger in being too friendly with players. Things are going well at the moment, but if players see the manager as their 'mate', or a father-figure, it could lead to problems further down the line. Just ask 'Uncle Roy' Evans (!)

From where I'm standing, Rodgers doesn't appear to have the required professional distance when it comes to certain players, and that is evident from his ceaseless gushing praise for the usual suspects. Admittedly, it was worse last season (!), but it remains a key part of Rodgers' management 'style'.

As far as the Premier League is concerned, history (arguably) proves that managers who retain professional distance are often the most successful. Prime examples in the modern era include Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho, and Arsene Wenger, tough managers who don't mollycoddle players.

Perhaps Rodgers will break the mould, and prove that the 'manager as mate' approach can work, but I'm not convinced.

What's the best approach: Matey 'father figure', or Benitez's emotionless tough-love?



  1. Give over Jamie there are many ways to skin a cat and it's obvious Rogers' 'matey style' as you put has been been paying big dividends, with the team probably playing its best football since the 80s.

    Oh and his public rebuking and punishment of Suarez last summer does show he has the required 'professional distance'. And that he'll stand up to the club's best players when they step out of line.

  2. He does play the father figure well, he gives them confidence try's to absorb the pressure and protects the players very well and isn't afraid to tell them where there doing something well.

    But like any father he isn't afraid to put his foot down when there's a problem the evidence being with sterling when stepped out of line, and made Suarez train on his own. I think he's probably got it just right . He's a smart bloke

  3. he shows he has a ruthless streak, look how he handled the Suarez issue, how Pepe was loaned out and how Jordan Henderson was almost sold to Fulham. Brendan is not scared to make the Big decisions Carol is another example.
    I believe he has the team playing for him and the philosophy he has put in place.
    I am not really in agreement with what you say about only 2 good signings. I think the others have not really had a chance to perform as the First choice players have performed at an extremely high standard all year round.
    Everyone is having a go at Aspas, Alberto and yet they have only played a handful of games. We have to go no further than Lucas,Henderson and to some extent Alan who were deemed to be pathetic by most LFC Fans, yet now the majority of fans love these players.
    LFC need squad depth and this has to be built over a period of time and when you do not have the money as our rivals do its obviously a lot harder. from captions seen and given the chance, I think Aspas and Alberto will prove the majority of us wrong. they clearly have the skill set.

  4. Are you serious .. We are having the best season in years, we are still in it with 5 games to go . I have total faith in our manager and you should too . Enjoy it Jamie as I sure the millions of liverpool fans are .

  5. Why don't you learn to accept that people have different views to you? I have faith in the manager too, just not blind faith. Deal with it.

  6. Jose mourihno keeps his distance from players? He goes around to John Terry's house for brews. Y do u think players like zlatan say they would die for him on the pitch? It's this close bond he retains with players y he gets the maximum out of his players. Brendan is of this mould hence him maximising the talent of our squad. His man management is second to none but the players respect him! Remember he made Suarez train on his own last summer until he apologised to his team mates.

  7. the father figure approach for me suits into the philosophical passing pattern profile he is trying to bring in.
    Guardiola has been successful with this system.

  8. Rodgers strikes me as having two very defined sides, A really nice side and a nasty side. Whether by upbringing or contrived, its a great tool to use when motivating individuals.

    Basically he says this is what I want, This is what I expect, If you raise yourselves above that bar, you will be kings lavished with praise and all you want. Fail to deliver and you will be sold or loaned out or wont even get a sniff of first team action.

    I am a massive believer in just those methods in all things including running societies.

  9. How would you describe Shankly's management style? Emotionless and tough love? Paisley, Fagan and Dalglish?

    The current squad is full of confidence, belief, winning mentality and this is down to Rodgers and his very astute man management.

  10. Mourinho? He is well known for have his favorites and mates in the team. To the point when new managers come in it is hard because they have to get used to a different type of manager. Mourinho may well be the man Rodgers learned this from.

    It's clear that his man management works. We have a lot of confidence players in our side and Rodgers helps maintain that confidence. Having said that he has been critical too. He has talked about players needing to reach certain standards. He has even been close to shipping players out. Henderson and Skrtel have been two of our best players this season and the tough love as well as then praise may well have lead these players to achieve these heights.Personally I that this article is churlish at best and worst arrogant to believe they know better than the manager who has gotten us to this stage we are now in.

  11. I said a similar thing before reading yours. Mourinh has been successful with the very same tactic.

  12. Wrong to use fergie, mourinho and wenger. In fergies own book he talks about how he helped the likes of scholes, giggs, butt and the Neville's. In addition to that, Ronaldo claimed fergie was a father figure (can't get more personal than that).

    Henry, cesc, vieira and multiple others have claimed wenger is a father figure. Mourinho had the likes of terry and drogba crying when he left. He even stayed in touch with them and used to regularly call them.

    So looking at that it seems the most successful managers in premier league history have all formed a special bond with their players. On the evidence of Rodgers' bond, this is the most successful Liverpool team I've seen so we should be applauding this. I always felt Rafa's methods weren't right as it could be demotivating.

    I see your point on the 'mate' thing becoming a problem but I feel if Rodgers has the respect of the players (which it seems he does), it shouldn't be a problem

  13. I think you're right to pose the question, but Rodgers has proved he can be tough when he needs to be. Also, I read recently that after his Reading experience, he told himself if he ever got another job as a manager he would do things his own way and if anyone wasn't fully on board with his ideas they would have to go. We are very lucky to have him, and well done to FSG for picking him out.

  14. Should we be worried about Rodgers man management skills? Let me think... We're to top of the league, top scorers, playing breathtaking football and our young players are making massive strides almost weekly. So should we be worried? No would be the short answer. Pointless article

  15. The best thing, as with most situations, is balance. I'm sure he's not afraid of having a go at players when they're out of line but will do so privately, which is the right approach in my opinion (we saw an example of this in Being Liverpool).

    Of course Rodgers will make mistakes, like Ferguson did and Mourinho does, but he is getting most things right and that is a major factor in why we are the closest to a Premier League title that we have ever been.

  16. "Prime examples in the modern era include Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho and Arsenal Wenger, tough managers who don't mollycoddle players"

    I just lol'ed when I read this and surmised that JK must be taking drugs.

    So many players have come out over the years and stated how these managers were like father figures to them, how it was because of them they become the players they went onto be.

    3 managers who will / have defended their players to the hilt in the press.

    Seriously, tough love, not even close lol

  17. Remaining professional in all your dealings with those who work for you is the best course...always. Professionalism includes a healthy dose of personal care. The requirements of the team come first...always. The requirements include team members who are fully invested in the mission and that example is set by the manager, supported by the team leadership and followed by the team as a whole. That's why players like Bawlotelli could never fit in the current Liverpool squad. This method is no big secret. All successful organizations practice it. The glue that makes it all work is trust. True professionals are by definition trustworthy.

  18. What about the guys he doesn't share a beer with? Do they trust him?

  19. I don't think there's anything wrong with Brendan's arm around the shoulder approach. It may not be traditional but Rodgers is forward thinking, and it suits his overall game. I study management full time and this type of leadership is well received within the business world, it's very much the present and the future.

    You can see that Rodgers has leant a lot about man management since he took over. Early on, he publicly favoured Allen and Borini in the team and it didn't seem as if he had established the competitive and well natured culture the squad revels in today. Later, he publicly drew the line with Sterling and Suarez. You can see growth as a man manager in that regard.

    With his initial lauding over players, I've never liked it, but it seems impossible not to do. You're not going to walk in and say that, for example, Gerrard is just another one of my players, instead you are going to praise him and hold him above the rest to win over the dressing room.

    Also as a young player growing up, I experienced the Magath super nazi coaches as well as the more comforting ones in the Rodgers mould, and I know which I prefer.

  20. Dear or Dear Jaimie,

    Poor article not well thought out or backed up with any facts to support your opinion.
    Yes be the voice of reason on the team, the manager, players ower's et el.
    However be measured you've gone way too far.

  21. Friendly nature is the way.

  22. Spurs currently getting their clocks cleaned by WBA...wonder if the odds of Sherwood surviving the season have gone down.

  23. That seems to be changing with Mourinho this year though... he's been incredibly critical of his players (and rightfully so to some extent).

    But if he keeps this up, he's eventually going to be sent packing like Mancini was from Man City. Every time Chelsea wins it is because of Mourinho. Every time Chelsea loses it's because of the players.

    That's going to wear thin.

  24. That's a good point actually he was supposed to have "lost the dressing room" at Real too. I think the "special one" thinks he is too special these days. But definitely in his first spell at Chelsea and Inter he was that kind of manager.

  25. TBH this article did seem like a way of crow barring in two of Jaimie's favorite and very debatable subjects. "Wasted money" and "over praise".

    The point that Steve Peters is seemingly having more time with Rodgers and the team says to me that we need not worry too much about how best to work the psychology of the players.

  26. It is also going to be interesting to see what happens with Wenger if Arsenal do not finish in the top 4 this season.

  27. The players themselves are telling us that it's working. Why wouldn't we believe them? The gushing praise is just something you don't personally like, what's that got to do with getting the best out of his players?

  28. If Arsenal let him go I would really question their logic and sense of perspective. One season outside the CL compared with more than 15 years of top flight success means he's still a very good manager. The idea that only making the top 4 year after year is a poor showing just makes no sense.

  29. I agree that getting rid of Wenger may not be the brightest idea but their fans are becoming increasingly frustrated with the lack of silverware.

  30. Totally agree. Wenger has made Arsenal hundreds of millions over the years from transfers and CL qualification. It would be madness to get rid of him after one season outside the CL.

  31. Yes, it's working this season; my point is that I don't believe that 'manager as mate' strategy can be effective in the long term.

  32. I think there is a question of stagnation at the moment. Those gooners who are calling for an end to his reign are questioning whether CL qualification is all that if Martinez can do it in one season. There is a feeling among some that Wenger doesn't seem to have the same hunger for success he once had.

  33. biggestfandownunder11:34 pm, April 12, 2014

    I think BR's time working in the shadows of Mourihno, and his appetite to grow, will mean he knows how to keep his man-management balanced. I reckon he can be as tough as nails when he needs to be. And with success, a manager's portfolio and presence grows, too. If we win the league this year, BR will be in a cache of his own, and will have a platform to rewrite what management looks like. (Football being football, if we don't win it, and struggle next year, the chance for creating such a legacy will pass.)