Sunday 25 September 2016

Brendan Rodgers vows to be 'more forceful' in battle for transfer targets

Chris Bascombe

Published 24/04/2015 | 02:30

Rodgers: Hitting back at critics
Rodgers: Hitting back at critics
Rodgers: Hitting back at critics

Brendan Rodgers insists he remains the best man to bring the glory days back to Liverpool but admitted the club must be "more forceful" to secure top targets this summer.

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The Liverpool manager launched an impassioned defence of his coaching credentials and said if he is given the tools to succeed, there is no one better to lead the Merseyside club.

Rodgers knows he has the backing of the club's owners and hinted at a change of approach in the next transfer window with Liverpool targeting more proven, established stars instead of works in progress.

"It is definitely starters we need and we have to be really forceful to get it," said Rodgers. "If you look last season we had a really good starting XI and then if you look at our depth we suffered. We addressed that last summer but indirectly we missed out on the starting XI because we've lost our two top strikers, so this year we've enough potential and players we can develop and improve."

Rodgers has come under scrutiny since the dire performance at Wembley in the FA Cup semi-final, but he offered a reminder of how much progress had been made over three years.

"After the weekend there is always emotion," he said. "I do not get carried away when we win and too down when we lose, but of course when you do lose a big game like the weekend this is when you find out you are at a big club because the critics come after you.

"I will hold myself up against anyone to manage this club and to fit the model of what they want. I am super ambitious in terms of wanting to win, and there will be no greater place to do that than here.

"In terms of what we are trying to do, I do not see anyone better in terms of the hand we were given.

"When I came in the team was eighth. Yes we had the Carling Cup win, but in terms of where the club wanted to go we implemented a philosophy that was exciting and won games and unexpectedly nearly won the league and qualified for the Champions League.

"We've got to two cup semi-finals, one of which we have not performed well in. The plan here and the focus is to be consistent and to be consistent winners, not to be 'nearly men'.

"We are here to win and there is no one more ambitious. If there comes a time when that is not the case and we move on, there will be no one who respects the owners more than me. But no, I will fight for my life to be here and if I can get the tools here to help us we can be really successful."

Jordan Henderson confirmed the signing of his new £100,000-a-week deal and said that working with Rodgers was a key element of his decision to stay at Anfield.

"He has been a massive part of me developing," he said. "He has improved the club. The next stage is to win a trophy and go from there. Brendan is a world-class manager." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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