Rodgers sees Liverpool on the up
Ferguson's 27-year reign, which will end in retirement this summer, has delivered 13 league titles to Old Trafford. Their success this season was their 20th, taking them further past Liverpool's previous record of 18 and achieving the Scot's primary aim all those years ago of 'knocking Liverpool off their perch'.
But with Ferguson out of the picture and David Moyes, who as Everton manager failed to record a league victory at United, Anfield, Manchester City or Arsenal in 11 years, taking over there is a sense there may be a dip in the Red Devils' success. "It (United) has been a machine which has been working for over 25 years," said the Reds boss.
"Sir Alex has really put his identity on the club and that has led to success. It will take David time to go in and assess everything but it is a club as stable as any in the world and it is ready-made for him.
"There is no doubt he (Ferguson) will be a big miss there because he has been there so many years and been part of the furniture, making the club what it is today.
"But (how they react to the change) is up to the rest of the clubs. The spending powers of the teams up there will always make it close.
"I can only think of Liverpool - I've a big enough job here to get us moving on but I think next year we can do that.
"My focus is to try to close the gap. We are bridging that gap slowly this year but hopefully we will take a bigger stride next year.
"But the reality is very simple: we are 30 points behind the leaders and 12 points behind fourth place so we have a lot of work to do here. We know it is a long road but we don't like being second-best and being behind.
"We don't start the season aiming to finish fourth. The aim is always to win the title. A club of this status that is the ultimate objective - but you have to be realistic."