Liverpool fans judge Brendan Rodgers solely on the results the eleven men he selects every weekend produce for him.
The change in feeling towards Rodgers between the 2013/14 and 2014/15 seasons shows our support is fickle, selfish and likely to sway at the drop of the hat.
Whether there’s anything wrong with this, of course, is up for debate. He’s a very well paid man charged with doing a specific job – and we perhaps wouldn’t expect those in our own professions to judge us on anything other than our working contribution.
But there is more to the man, like with every manager, than what you see in the dugout and in post-match interviews, and these latest quotes suggest this…
“I’ve been through probably the most traumatic four years of my life,” he said, featured in Michael Calvin’s new book, Living on the Volcano, cited here in the Echo.
“I lost my mum. I lost my dad. I split up from the woman I loved for 23 years. I had a court case, two Old Bailey trials over six weeks with my son who was charged with sexual assault, which was an absolute disgrace.
“Yet professionally, here and at Swansea, these have been the best four years of my life. Something has to come from within. You have to put the professional and personal to each side. It’s about being happy of course, but the owners have paid me to do a job, so I will do the job.
“There’s a story about Jimmy Sirrel at Notts County which has stuck with me since I was a young coach. His wife, Cathy, died late on the Friday night, but he came in on the Saturday.
“Nothing was said. He got on with his job, he did his job. Team played the game, won the game. Normally after every game, him and his wife would sit at a little table and have a glass. Then they’d go.
“This Saturday night he quickly popped into the bar. Someone asked about his wife, and he said, ‘She died last night’. He’d lost the woman of his life, his right hand, but he still came in and did his job. Makes you think, doesn’t it?”
Above anything, the quotes should remind Liverpool supporters and football fans in general that the managers we put on pedestals and shoot back down again are human.
Rodgers has his faults, managerially and personally, but we’d like to think that during his three year tenure at Liverpool he’s kept his integrity despite an enormous amount of pressure in his working and home life.
And we’re ready to support him for as long as he’s at the Anfield helm.