Personally I was not surprised to see Liverpool terminate Brendan Rodgers’ contract.
The writing had been on the wall for some time, a lot of the fans had decided that he wasn’t the right man for the job and being a football manager is often a popularity contest.
It gets difficult for a manager when you’ve got all these fans thinking that they can do a better job themselves and calling for you to go.
This is actually quite rare at Liverpool, they aren’t a club that tend to go around sacking managers on a regular basis, and the fact that the crowd were voicing their discontent speaks volumes.
I’m not sure I can remember this happening before, so I think that tells you everything you need to know. Liverpool simply weren’t doing well enough under Rodgers and the fans were letting it be known that they’d had enough.
I don’t think that he can really have any complaints as he’s spent almost £300 million and he’s actually made Liverpool worse.
His side were miles away from the two Manchester clubs, Arsenal and even Chelsea – who are obviously struggling at the moment.
They don’t score enough goals, they’re poor at the back, and Rodgers has made too many bad signings.
Dejan Lovren can’t defend, their goalkeeper Simon Mignolet can’t catch the ball, Mamadou Sakho is a liability and Daniel Sturridge has loads of talent but is so injury prone he makes Darren Anderton look indestructible.
There are many more examples of poor players he has signed and ultimately I think his transfer dealings are what have cost him.
I like some of the guys that he has brought in like James Milner and Nathaniel Clyne, they’re decent additions, but Rodgers has lost world class performers like Luis Suarez and Steven Gerrard and hasn’t replaced them with top players.
That is why Liverpool have got worse under his stewarship. Could Rodgers argue that Ricky Lambert, Mario Balotelli and even Christian Benteke are suitable replacements for a forward of Suarez’s calibre?
I do have some sympathy for Rodgers, because I’m not convinced he’s had full control over all the players the club have signed during his tenure.
Losing a player of Suarez’s importance was always going to be tough too, and you have to give Rodgers credit for almost winning the title in 2013/14.
You also have to remember that Liverpool’s fans put a lot of pressure on him because in their minds they are still a big club who have to be winning trophies, when in reality they just aren’t that good any more.
Jurgen Klopp has replaced Rodgers, and I expect he is going to find it tough because Liverpool don’t have a good side at the moment and they’re simply not a big enough club to compete with the very best these days.
A TOUGH, TOUGH GIG .............
Talking about some topics for my column last week got me thinking about the role of journeymen in the world of boxing.
The first thing I need to say about these fighters is that I have nothing but respect for them.
They have a tough, tough gig and they are the hardest breed of people walking the earth, in my opinion.
The bottom line is, boxing is a business and without these guys, the sport simply wouldn’t be alive.
If you don’t sell tickets as a boxer then you get fed to the lions in this game.
Unless you’re a top, top prospect, you haveto have a big following otherwise you’re not going to make a promoter any money.
That’s the reality of the industry, and that is why you’ll see plenty of poor boxers get looked after, given easy fights and enjoy a long unbeaten record because they sell tickets and generate cash.
On the other hand, if you aren’t making someone rich then you’re in for a career of taking fights at short notice, boxing away from home on a regular basis and searching for that one big knockout that’s going to elevate you.
It doesn’t necessarily matter that you might be a lot better than some of the fighters that you will see operating nearer the top of the game.
That’s why, as I always say, you can’t read too much into a fighter’s record and it’s important to remember that the top 10 fighters in a weight division aren’t always the best 10 fighters.
I’ve read Danny Little, a fellow Driffield boxer, saying how he has to fight away from home all the time because he doesn’t sell many tickets, and as a result it’s very hard for him to pick up wins with the home judges against him.
The reality is, that as an away fighter you often need to knock your opponent down just to get a draw, otherwise you’ll end up getting edged out on points no matter how well you box.
I’ve sparred and trained with Danny a lot, and I know what a talented and dedicated professional he is.
My advice to him and any other fighters in the same position, is don’t be too downhearted about the situation you find yourself in.
Be proud of the tough job you’re doing, keep working hard and go out there and try and land that one big punch that could change your life forever.
ASK WOODHOUSE .............
How big is the step up in class between the Championship and the Premier League? Rodney Marsden.
It was massive when I was playing and I’m sure it will be even greater now given the higher calibre of players in the top flight the se days.
As a central midfielder I came up against the likes of Steven Gerrard, Roy Keane and Juan Sebastian Veron during my time at Birmingham City and you literally could not get anywhere near these guys.
Obviously their touch and technique was better, but the most noticable thing about players in the Premiership is how big, strong and powerful they are.
When I was playing in the Championship and I got promoted to the Premier League I thought I was a pretty decent footballer, but when you come up against the top players you soon start to think ‘actually I’m not really that good.’
What is the funniest moment that you were involved in as a professional sportsman? Pat Kennison.
There are a few to be honest, but I remember Steve Bruce calling me into his office when I was at Sheffield United.
He was absolutely furious because he’d heard that I had been out drinking in a nightclub called the Treadmill until the early hours of the morning.
I swore to Steve that I had not been out drinking in the Treadmill, and I actually hadn’t.
I had been out on the night in question, but I’d been to a place called the Leadmill and Steve eventually found out the truth.
He got me back in and went mad at me again but I just said to him “Steve, I promised you I hadn’t been in a club called the Treadmill, and I wasn’t lying.”
I say this was funny, I was in hysterics and couldn’t stop laughing, but Steve definitely wasn’t amused. I thought that his head was going to explode.