Seventh, sixth and eighth - those were the positions Liverpool finished in at the end of the three seasons before the beginning of Brendan Rodgers' reign.
And 7th, 2nd and 6th were where the Reds came in each of the campaigns that the Northern Irishman spearheaded. So he bettered two of those places, one of them resoundingly so.
Unless the Liverpool board know and see things we don't, that are of a no-way-back nature (losing the dressing room, an affair with the chairman's wife) then it is not the best time to be sacking a manager.
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In light of his dismissal, whatever good or bad things that Rodgers achieved and did in the past, he should have been gone in the summer rather than just eight league games into the season.
There's a transfer committee that Rodgers had to confer with, who had a major say in what players were bought. And not just from a financial point of view as is the case with Manchester United, say. But the type of player that was purchased; as if the American owners can pinpoint how Roberto Firminho will link up perfectly with Christian Benteke, and the inner workings of how a football team and its players operate.
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On the one hand you could say that they wanted those players, so whether it was Rodgers or Jurgen Klopp working with them, the owners expected to be doing better so far this season. On the other, you could ask what is the point in letting him spend millions upon millions of pounds on a group of players if he is not going to be given the time to transform them into Champions League certainties and title contenders?
Yes, Rodgers spent a fair bit of money last year as well and Liverpool, the 18-time league champions and five-time European Cup winners, still only finished 6th. But look where they were before Rodgers came in. History might say that they should be up there, but unless you're in a non-competitive league, every club has its time dominating the domestic arena. And the Merseyside club are not the club of old fighting for the big titles year in, year out.
Rodgers was building something
But Rodgers was building something that could take more than three years to come to fruition in the form of consistently finishing in the top four and challenging for the title. He was way ahead of schedule when coming runners-up to Manchester City under 18 months ago, the closest the club have come to ending their near three decade drought without England's top prize. Then that summer they lost Luis Suarez.
He wasn't just losing his best striker, he was losing one of the top five players in the world who could transform a mid-table team into top four contenders. So the Merseyside club were always going to be severely affected by his loss of a man who didn't just have a goal ratio of one every 1.6 matches, but one that provided numerous assists and created and defended all over the pitch.
Thoughtless people have said ''anyone could have nearly won the league with him in the side.'' But that is nonsense. And while they may point to Man United having a good few years after Cristiano Ronaldo's departure, Liverpool also lost Daniel Sturridge for most of the season after (his goal ratio is also one every 1.6 games at the time of typing), the impressive full-back Jon Flanagan for the entirety of the campaign, and then of course, Steven Gerrard and Raheem Sterling last summer.
So a forward partnership that a club only comes across around every ten years, and whose individual goal ratios were both one every 1.6 games, was destroyed. While they lost one of the greatest players in their history and last season's top scorer in Gerrard, and one of the best young players in Europe. No team would sustain the same level losing four or five players that were the nucleus of a side. So Rodgers was not doing a bad job under the circumstances.
Rodgers could have built a dynasty
Thinking back and looking at footage of Liverpool's capitulation in two of those last three games against Chelsea and Crystal Palace in 2013-14 makes that near-miss sadder. One thing that has to be said is that Rodgers never really sorted out Liverpool's defence - the area of the pitch that cost them the title.
But if they had won the league and Suarez had not got himself into trouble and stayed, which would have likely have led to Gerrard and Sterling being at the club beyond this season, Rodgers really could have built a dynasty to potentially rival Alex Ferguson's at their great north-west rivals, United.
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