2 Jan 2016

Anfield Stunner: Legend warns that Klopp could face the 'chop' at Liverpool unless he fixes 'lots of errors'

After another ignominious defeat, the honeymoon is well and truly over for Reds boss Jurgen Klopp, who is now (surely) realising the enormity of the task he faces at Liverpool. Is his job under threat, though? Of course not, but after today's calamity at West Ham, England legend Gary Lineker suggested that the German could follow Rodgers out the door unless things change at Anfield.

Reacting to Liverpool's 2-0 defeat, Lineker tweeted:

"Doesn't look good for Jurgen Klopp. Lots of errors have to stop, to ensure the German's not a flop, who follows Rodgers and gets the chop".

Risible attempt at poetry aside, Lineker is right about cutting out the errors, both by the players, and by Klopp himself (i.e. team selection; tactical decisions; blind faith in grossly underperforming players).

To be honest, it doesn't matter how badly things go for the rest of the season - many fans will still blame Brendan Rodgers, and argue that the squad he assembled is responsible for negative results/performances.

In my view, this is a giant copout:

* Klopp is the manager, and he has a squad of expensive, highly-paid international players with whom to work. If he can't get much out of them, then it's his fault, not Rodgers'.

* The likes of Coutinho, Firmino, Benteke etc are quality players, and this has been proven time and time again.

* A good manager should be able to create a system of play within which these players can thrive. Rodgers failed, and that's why he got the red card. Klopp is currently failing, and that is on him, not Rodgers.

* The ultimate hypocrisy here is that Rodgers is continually blamed when things go wrong (like today), but when Liverpool win, he receives zero recognition. If - as fans/pundits keep telling us - it's 'Rodgers' team', not Klopp's, then surely logic dictates that Rodgers should be praised for any Liverpool success this season?

* This is not how fan logic works, though. Until Klopp signs his own players, Rodgers will be blamed for poor performances/results, but if Klopp signs no one, and Liverpool win two Cups, and finish 4th, then he'll be feted for those achievements. Typical double-standard at play.

At this stage, Klopp probably has the safest job in the Premier League, but the 'Rodgers' team' excuse can't be used indefinitely, and if Liverpool fail to finish in the top four this season (especially when the league is so open) then the buck will stop with Klopp, not Rodgers.

Author: Jaimie K


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