Right now is not a fun time to be Brendan Rodgers. His team can't seem to scrape together a win, he can't seem to figure out his tactical and personnel problems, and the masses are calling for his head in a way that hasn't been seen since the French Revolution. It's not an enviable position to be in, but one of Rodgers' more seasoned veterans thinks everyone might want to dial down the panic and get behind the manager.
"This time is difficult for everybody but we need to stick together and fight for this manager because he’s one of the best managers in the Premier League," said Kolo Touré, voice of reason. "He is young as a manager and this is the first time he has managed in the Champions League. He is learning.
"I see [Arsène] Wenger in him because he’s so intelligent. He knows how to speak to players and how to get the best out of them. Just look at what he’s done during a short time here. When he arrived Liverpool were doing badly. He came in and brought the club a long way up. Maintaining it is more difficult than first coming up there. I think he is learning definitely. This season is a learning process but he will get there."
It might be a wee bit churlish to point out that Wenger himself isn't having a lot of fun right now either. Despite a win over Dortmund in Champions League earlier this week, Arsenal are also struggling with form and injuries and, not unlike Rodgers, Wenger is on the receiving end of a lot of #WengerOut vitriol. As with Rodgers, it may not be 100% deserved, and Kolo Touré sees further similarities in the efforts put forth by the two managers in order to get the results they do (for better or worse).
"[Rodgers is] a fair guy who is working hard and gives 100% every day," Touré continued. "Like Arsène, he’s always there at training trying to improve things. His style of play is also similar. He always wants us to pass the ball and keep playing which is very important."
Wenger's Arsenal are often derided for a supposed fixation on winning the so-called "Fourth Place Trophy", but on the brink of a departure from Champions League after being out of the tournament for several seasons, Liverpool could certainly do worse than emulating the kinds of results Wenger's achieved during his tenure in London.