Liverpool’s wide-reaching search for a new manager is complete, with the appointment of former Swansea City boss Brendan Rodgers confirmed in a press conference at Anfield.
Fenway Sports Group, the club’s owners, have conducted a thorough process to find a replacement for Kenny Dalglish, who was sacked two weeks ago after the Reds finished eighth in the Premier League.
After Rodgers originally rejected an invitation to be interviewed, and unrealistic targets such as Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp were ruled out, Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez emerged as the favourite to take charge at Anfield. Martinez met principal owner John W Henry in America for talks.
But FSG turned their attention back to Rodgers on Tuesday and were granted permission by Swansea to talk to the Northern Irishman, who was said to be Liverpool's first choice. After compensation was agreed with the Welsh side, Rodgers signed a three-year deal to manage Liverpool.
Rodgers, who insisted he was not going to work under a
director of football, said: "We might not be ready for the title
now but the process begins today.
"If it was a sporting director, that was something I made
clear I couldn't work with. What you need is an outstanding
team. We will form a technical board that will have four or
five people that will decide the way forward.
"I promise I'll fight for my life and for the people in this city.
Hopefully over time I will earn that respect. If you can have
success, hopefully you can be here for many years. It's a
real special club. I'm really looking forward to moving
here to the city."
Rodgers made his name as an astute coach and
was handpicked to join Jose Mourinho’s backroom
staff when the Portuguese arrived at Chelsea in 2004,
before taking his first manager’s job in 2008.
Liverpool will be the fourth club the 39-year-old has
managed, following short spells with Watford and
Reading in the Championship and a highly successful
two-year period with Swansea.
He guided the Swans to promotion to the Premier League
within a year of taking charge at the Liberty Stadium and
won plaudits for his side’s attacking football as they
finished 11th in the top flight in 2011/12.
Now Rodgers is tasked with returning Liverpool to the Premier League top four and UEFA Champions League qualification, which has been missing since 2009.
Liverpool chairman Tom Werner said: "Brendan is only the 18th person to have the great honour of being the Liverpool manager. I just want to thank Kenny Dalglish, who is the heart and soul of Liverpool. He brought great stability to the club at a time when we needed it. I believe our supporters will embrace Brendan's attacking principles."
By Chris Shaw, Senior Editor
Rodgers originally rejected an interview but club owner John W Henry persuaded him to take the job
LIVERPOOL SEASON 2011/12
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