Thursday 18 January 2018

Brendan Rodgers 'wasn't aware' he getting the sack following Merseyside derby

Former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been linked with the vacant Celtic job
Former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been linked with the vacant Celtic job

Mark Critchley

Former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted that he did not see his dismissal from Anfield coming.

The Northern Irish coach was relieved of his duties in the hours immediately after a 1-1 draw in the Merseyside derby against Everton last October.

At the time of Rodgers’ dismissal, his side had won just four of their 11 games across all competitions, having missed out on Champions League qualification the previous season.

“I wasn't aware [I was about to lose my job],” he told beIN Sports, according to The Mirror. “There was a lot of speculation for about six months.

“All I ever tried to concentrate on was getting the best out of the team, but we perhaps weren't playing as fluidly as we had done in the previous couple of years, but we were trying to work back towards that again and it was something I felt we could get to.

“However, we played the game against Everton and after it I got a call. I wasn't aware before the game, and the derby result was a decent one away from home.”

Liverpool took the lead on that day at Goodison Park through new signing Danny Ings, only for Romelu Lukaku to restore parity before half-time.

"We played well in the first half and I felt we should have won the game, but I accepted it,” Rodgers recalled.

“Of course I was disappointed by the decision but, I repeat, I respected the owners, who wanted to take the club in a different direction. I did my best and will always only have fond memories from my time at the club.”

The former Swansea City manager claims that he has received five job offers since leaving Anfield and discussed returning to the Liberty Stadium with Swans chairman Huw Jenkins.

Rodgers, however, is keen to wait until summer before getting back into management and would consider working abroad.

“I have had five opportunities since I left Liverpool to get back into work, all at clubs I really respect, but I just felt I wanted to take some time out,” he said. “It is very intense when you are in the game.

“I enjoy the scrutiny, and life of being at the leading edge of the game, but that opportunity that presented itself when I left Liverpool gave me the chance to go away for the first time in five years and sit and reflect on how I work and can improve and I hope my next club will benefit from that.

“I spoke to Huw Jenkins, the chairman, and people I know well, but I made it clear, I was pretty open, Swansea is a wonderful club, and there were also a couple of other Premier League clubs I could have gone back to, but I was open and upfront: I wasn't going to be available to come into a club before the summer.

“I am open. It is where I feel I can go in and make a difference: a job that will excite me. It doesn't have to necessarily be at a top club. It can be at home or abroad. It is just about finding the right opportunity, one that will excite me to go in and somewhere I can help make better.”

(© Independent News Service)

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