Sunday 15 December 2019

Rodgers 'intrigued' by Liverpool interest

Jamie Holland

Swansea City's Brendan Rodgers has emerged as a genuine challenger to Roberto Martinez for the Liverpool manager's job.

Amid suggestions that Rodgers would be meeting Liverpool last night, Swansea City chairman Huw Jenkins emerged during the day from his own routine discussions with the Northern Irishman -- which had been scheduled long before the Liverpool position became available -- to insist that there had still been no contact.

With Wigan Athletic manager Martinez weighing up whether the structure Liverpool's owners Fenway Sports Group have put before him is to his liking, 39-year-old Rodgers (above) has told friends that, although he is happy with life in Wales, he is intrigued by the chance to manage what he still considers to be one of football's biggest clubs.

He is pondering whether such an opportunity will come around again. Rodgers is ambitious, though Jenkins has been careful to put in place benefits which discourage him from leaving.

The Swansea chairman provided him with a new, enhanced contract in January, and was careful to insist on a £5m compensation clause, but he also gave Rodgers the opportunity to feel he was at the hub of the club's future by asking him to oversee the development of the club's new training ground.

He nurtures huge ambition from his very successful time at Chelsea, where he fitted in well with some world-class players under Jose Mourinho.

However, Rodgers was badly burnt when he left Watford for Reading, lasting only six months there with a board who did not give him time and that is weighing on his mind.

But Rodgers has also never made any secret of the fact that he wants to work for a club who have the potential to win silverware and the Liverpool opportunity may prove too much to resist.

The outcome of Liverpool's pursuit of a new manager may now depend on how both Martinez and Rodgers feel about the prospect of working under Louis van Gaal, who is favourite to become the club's sporting director.

Irish Independent

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