In the last month, three things have converged to suggest Brendan Rodgers might want to fear for his job. First, back-to-back losses against Manchester United and Arsenal, followed by a not-entirely-convincing win against Newcastle in the league. Second, a dismal performance in the FA Cup semi-final that saw the Liverpool eliminated from the competition. And finally, third, the announcement from northwest Germany that Jürgen Klopp would be stepping down as Borussia Dortmund's manager come the end of the season.
It's Klopp's sudden and unexpected availability that has a caused a crisis in confidence in even the most die hard Rodgers supporters, with his announcement being ill-timed for those who would love to see Klopp with the Kop but haven't yet lost faith in the Brendan Rodgers project. Rumours from untrustworthy sources have already anointed either Arsenal or Liverpool as Klopp's final destination, but Brendan Rodgers is pretty sure he'll still be at Anfield come next season.
"Very much so," Rodgers answered when asked whether he'd still be on Merseyside this summer. "I don’t think there is anyone better. That’s the reality of how I see it. Three months ago I was a tactical genius, performing to a good level. We lost some important games and now I’m not so good. That’s football, people will speculate.
"I have a strong relationship with the owners. They understand this was going to be a process. This isn’t a group of ready made players used to winning. I’ve not taken over a machine that for 10 years was winning trophies. That’s something we are clear on. But of course we want to be better next season and improve on the performance level."
Assuming Liverpool don't completely tank the remaining six games in the season, Rodgers and the owners seem to be on the same page as to what the expectations for the club are and, perhaps more importantly, how long it might take to accomplish their goals. That this time line doesn't move quickly enough for many fans is certainly a point of consideration for many, but doesn't seem to be one for the people controlling the purse strings.
To his credit, Rodgers seems unfazed by all the talk about bringing Klopp in as a replacement. It's not the first time the press has run wild with the idea of replacing Rodgers, and football being football it probably won't be the last, either.
"When you’re at a club like Liverpool you will have many names mentioned - that’s the mark of being at such a huge club, a worldwide club," Rodgers explained. "It’s not a problem. It’s something that happens. If you lose a couple of games, others will be linked with the job. That will happen whether I’m doing good, bad or indifferent because this is such a big club."