Brendan Rodgers under increasing pressure from Liverpool fans

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Brendan Rodgers has seemingly been walking on thin ice of late and now the Liverpool manager will be treading even more carefully.

A loss to Hull was the last thing Rodgers needed after a goalless draw with West Bromwich Albion at the weekend and a humiliating exit from the FA cup against Aston Villa the week before.

Tension is now rising among the Liverpool fans that has not been seen since Roy Hodgson was in charge back in 2010. And it is easy to see why.

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The few Liverpool fans that did attend the game at the KC (after a planned boycott after the outrageous charging of Liverpool fans for £50 whilst other away fans had been charged cheaper tickets) were treated to what can only be described a dire football.

James Pearce, writer for the Liverpool Echo summed up the performance on Twitter stating that 'I thought West Brom was bad but this has been even worse'.

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His view was echoed by other disgruntled Liverpool fans so much so, that minutes after the game had finished, a parody account of Rodgers had been set up, dubbed 'Deluded Rodgers' and had achieved over 5,000 followers within its first hour of existence.

Soon came polls asking Liverpool fans if they wanted Rodgers in or out, with the majority voting for the latter. To finally add insult to injury, Rodgers started appearing in memes and videos with the phrase 'we showed great character' reverberating off the twittersphere.

Tide turning

It seems that the tide of tolerance to Rodgers finally seems to be turning and it is easy to understand why. The grand total of £215 million has been spent on new players over the last three years and has produced nothing.

Most of signings have been maligned and ridiculed on social media and by the press. Robbie Savage, writing for BBC Sport, recently ran the rule over all of Rodgers' acquisitions to deem them either a success or flop. Only three were been deemed successful.

Further things to consider are the contract wranglings of Raheem Sterling, the brightest spark in Liverpool's future, and use of players that have mentally checked out of the club, namely Glen Johnson and Steven Gerrard.

Against Hull on Tuesday night, Mario Balotelli highlighted why again he needs to be quickly offloaded by Liverpool in the summer. His approach to big games has also been questioned in recent weeks with the lack of cutting edge that brought success to the club last season.

Rodgers came out after the game to Hull and said his players would keep fighting to the very end of the season. But with the Europa League as the most likely prize, it doesn't seem to be very inspiring.

However, to give Rodgers credit, he has brought a lot of good to the club. He has restored pride in being a Liverpool supporter and got the recipe for success so nearly right last season with a title charge that the owners admitted they did not see happening so fast.

Too much too soon

That was the one major problem brought over from last season. The rapid rise that Liverpool had also heightened expectation within Liverpool fans and it is understandable; the club hasn't won the league since 1990 and is desperate to bring Manchester United down off their high horse.

This season was always going to be a struggle given two major factors; the loss of Luis Suarez and the amount of new signings brought in. Suarez was the glue in the team last year; not only did he score goals but he created chance after chance and his work ethic was superb. Rodgers was never going to replace that.

The number of new players and the failures of most them have seen the club being compared to Spurs after they sold Gareth Bale to Real Madrid. There are worrying similarities to what happened to Spurs, with players being played out of position and a lack of motivation.

But Rodgers cannot control how fast a player integrates into a club. Suarez only found his best form after living in the UK for over a year. It takes time to settle into a new country, let alone a new club and most of the players brought in are very young.

Rodgers has been unfortunate as well with injuries to key personnel such as Adam Lallana, Mamadou Sakho, Lucas and Daniel Sturridge. They help to form the spine of the team.

The manager is now facing a proper challenge to his legitimacy as the man in charge for the second time this season. He deserves part of the blame but Ian Ayre should also have the finger pointed at him for the recruitment strategy.

Who else?

If FSG do fire Rodgers, the question of who would replace him would be tough. Most Liverpool fans want Jurgen Klopp and he would be a very good fit if he wanted the job. He rebuilt Dortmund, leading them to the Bundesliga title twice and a Champions League final in 2013.

Another candidate is Frank de Boer of Ajax who is a known admirer of Liverpool and has already stated he would love to manage the club. Christopher Gaiter of St Etienne has also been linked having done a tremendous job getting them to fourth in Ligue 1 on a relatively small budget.

However, if Rodgers is given the summer to regroup, this will be his last chance. What will help is if Liverpool can have a decent end to the season. He will need to get everything right over the summer, including making sure that the players are fully fit and ready to go in August.

He will need to get his signings right and make sure that he is confident with his tactics. If he fails, FSG will get rid of him as they want to see their investment working more than anything else.

Rodgers has done plenty at Liverpool but his stock is plummeting. The knives are out right now but, if results improve, he the pressure will ease. But does he deserve the chance to stay?

Liverpool fans: do you think Brendan Rodgers should be sacked? Let us know below!

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