Seven reasons for Manchester United to go all in and appoint Brendan Rodgers now
You’ve seen the rumours. And quite possibly wished you hadn’t. Yes, Brendan Rodgers is a lead contender for the Manchester United job.
Envisioning the former Liverpool boss in the Old Trafford home dugout is not necessarily most fans’ dream appointment. But it seems like one United may be serious about.
There are reasons to rally against it, aside from the Liverpool factor. He has a poor European record, and he has let strong league positions slip from his grasp at the last hurdle on three separate occasions.
It is also the kind of appointment you can talk yourself into. There are enough positives with Rodgers to look on the bright side, and that is what we are going to do here and be positive about the possible appointment.
Here is a look at seven reasons United should be all in on Rodgers and look to appoint the Northern Irishman…
Woeful recent results show Manchester United need changes. If the club wait until December or January to act, it could be too late and the season could be lost.
So if United make a change over the next fortnight to shake the situation up, and Rodgers is the choice, then the somewhat belated proactive approach should be welcomed.
Rodgers can bring fresh ideas to a team which seems bereft of ways to turn at this point under Solskjaer.
At present there are very few managers available who United would want, having skipped Antonio Conte, and Erik Ten Hag and Mauricio Pochettino is unavailable.
Rodgers is under contract at Leicester, but he had no trouble walking out on Celtic mid-season for a better offer, and the Foxes cannot be surprised if he does the same to them.
If United want a change right now, rather than at the end of the season, then Rodgers is one of two ways United seem ready to turn to, with The Times also reporting Zinedine Zidane remains an option.
Premier League proven
Unlike Zidane, Brendan Rodgers knows the Premier League and won’t be surprised by anything in the task ahead at United.
Zidane has cracked Europe, and this will be tempting, but he has only managed one team in his coaching career.
Rodgers is suited to the weekly grind of the Premier League as he has been used to it for much of the past decade. He knows his style of football works in England.
There is a lot to be said for a known quantity. Erik Ten Hag is the man of the moment, but previously successful Ajax bosses have struggled to enjoy similar success in England, see Ronald Koeman and Frank de Boer.
Rodgers and his coaching staff will be ready-made for the challenge ahead, whereas other options may need more adjustment.
Gets the most out of his players
One of the biggest issues with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is that he has failed to get his signings to really click.
Jadon Sancho and Donny van de Beek are just two of his substantial investments which he has not been able to utilise correctly. And it is hard to say he has improved early signings Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire.
Rodgers has shown at Leicester he can utilise his signings correctly, with the likes of Youri Tielemans, Caglar Soyuncu and Wesley Fofana becoming key players since he signed them.
He has even been able to get the best out of Kelechi Iheanacho, whose career was drifting before Rodgers arrived.
At Liverpool, Rodgers showed an ability to get the best out of star players too, with Luis Suarez enjoying his best ever individual season under his coaching. United’s stars could have a new lease of life under Rodgers.
Leaves his teams better off
If you look at each of Rodgers’ last four jobs, Swansea City, Liverpool, Celtic, and Leicester, all four clubs were better off for him being there.
Even though his Liverpool stint ended on a sour note, Rodgers took them closer to the title than any manager in the past two decades previous, and laid some of the groundwork for Jurgen Klopp to take the team forward.
United should have some confidence that if Rodgers takes over at Old Trafford, he will take the team forward, whether he is successful in his hunt for silverware or not.
One of the prerequisites to get Manchester United fans onside is for managers to play attractive football.
It was for this reason David Moyes, Louis van Gaal, and Jose Mourinho all failed.
And this season, it is one of the principle reason Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has floundered. The team look disjointed, and an overtly negative approach was the downfall against City.
Rodgers’ trusts his system and has a record of playing attractive, passing, well coached football in each of his previous jobs.
Last season Leicester were the joint third highest scoring team in the Premier League.
Rodgers plays youth
Another key principle for Manchester United bosses is to trust young players. Brendan Rodgers has a track record of doing that too.
His success at Swansea came thanks to faith in young players like Scott Sinclair.
At Liverpool he was the manager who gave Raheem Sterling his debut, and promoted Trent Alexander-Arnold into the first team squad before he left the club.
His time at Leicester has seen him trust a young core of players, while bringing through young prospects like James Justin, Harvey Barnes, and Luke Thomas.
Manchester United’s array of young talent would be in good hands, and the club would not have to worry about the academy being neglected by the first team boss. Rodgers would make good use of the top tier talent which is ready to break through.
He’s turned into a winner
One of the biggest reasons for Rodgers to take the Celtic job was to get a taste for silverware, and he did so ravenously.
Rodgers won two domestic trebles and was on course for a third before he left for Leicester. He departed Celtic having won seven trophies in less than three full seasons.
He has continued this at Leicester, winning the 2020/21 FA Cup by beating Chelsea in the final.
Winning trophies is a great habit to get into, and Rodgers now has the self-belief to get there. This could make a huge difference to him becoming a success at Manchester United.
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