Is Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool Suffering From An Identity Crisis?

It wasn’t so long ago that Liverpool were on the cusp of becoming Premier League champions for the first time in their illustrious history. The quick-attacking football club garnered praise from pundits and fans as Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool narrowly lost the title to Manchester City. Rodgers’ ability to produce an entertaining outfit that went on to rack up over a hundred goals in a season, eventually won him the LMA Manager of the Year.

Fast-forward to 2015, Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool is now a team chasing its former glory, not of the 70s and 80s, but rather the team that was proclaimed as one of the most entertaining in the history of the Premier League.

Brendan Rodgers’ possessive football in Swansea began his journey to Liverpool after the sacking of club legend Kenny Dalglish. His possessive strategy had little success in his first season at the club after his failure to qualify for the UEFA Champions League.

However, Brendan Rodgers’ second season at the club won him plaudits for getting the most out of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge. Some maintain it was lucky, while others were certain that Liverpool had finally found the manager to lead them to their first League title since the early 90s.

In Brendan Rodgers’ third season, Liverpool lost their talisman in Luis Suarez, the Uruguayan would not be the last prominent player to leave the club. The absence of Luis Suarez posed a new dilemma for Rodgers’ Liverpool, as the Merseyside club would now have to rely on another to not only become their leading goalscorer but also produce the same tenacity from up front.

Liverpool struggled to ferment a formation for the 2014-15 Premier League season. The Reds relied on a 5-3-2 formation with the majority of the players selected in an unfamiliar role. The heart and soul of the team, Steven Gerrard, struggled to make Rodgers’ 11. Gerrard decided it was time to trade in his spot on the bench to a starting role in Los Angeles for the L.A. Galaxy.

The once exciting Liverpool team under Brendan Rodgers is now just an old remnant of its former self. Liverpool have failed to score two goals in a single match since their victory over Queens Park Ranger last season. Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool is now the second lowest goalscorers in the league after their dismal 1-1 draw against Norwich. A performance that resulted in Liverpool fans booing the team at the final whistle.

during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Norwich City at Anfield on September 20, 2015 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Devoid of any conviction, Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool has struggled so far this season. The manager has yet to convince the fans that last season was just a mere blip, instead leading many to believe that the quick-attacking Liverpool of two season was just anomoly.

Brendan Rodgers reversion into 5-3-2 is now a sign of the Northern Ireland manager’s defensive mode. A sign that could confirm suspicions of a manager fearing the axe.

[Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images]