After half a decade of performing incredibly in both the transfer market and on the pitch, Liverpool’s 2022-23 season was, not to put too fine a point on it, a bit of a shit show. 12 minutes of Premier League football and a Courtois worldie away from doing the impossible, the club decided to run it back, swapping long-time superstar Sadio Mané for up-and-coming superstar Darwin Núñez, looking to go just one step better a year on.
As we know, that didn’t pan out, as physical and mental fatigue alongside injuries saw the squad stumble from stupendous highs to shocking lows throughout the season.
Simultaneously, there was upheaval in the backroom staff, as not only did sporting director Michael Edwards leave, but his successor announces he would also be departing after less than a year in the role, while a number of physios and doctors left the club over the course of the year, among rumours of infighting and ego issues behind the scenes.
Jörg Schmadtke was brought in to do the job on a temporary basis — whispers are that he has not done enough to convince the top brass he should be a long-term solution — and the expectation is that the club will be looking to lock down a superstar sporting director to build on the successful systems already in place.
It will not, however, be a re-appointment of Michael Edwards, as the laptop enthusiast will be making his return to football as the head of his own company. Alongside fellow former backroom Red, Ian Graham, Edwards has launched the company Ludonautics, derived from the latin for play and navigation — real clever, fellas — which will offer solutions to teams to create success on and off the pitch.
Edwards is reportedly taking a role as a non-executive director, and will be available to work elsewhere, but according to David Ornstein, he is not planning on working as a director of football again.