Rodgers' pride at Liverpool appointment
Brendan Rodgers has revealed his pride at being appointed manager of Liverpool. The 39-year-old left Swansea for Anfield after a compensation package was agreed between the two clubs.
"I'm very proud, it's a club with wonderful tradition and I feel very blessed with the opportunity to manage the club," Rodgers said at his unveiling this morning.
Rodgers admitted his mind was made up to move to Merseyside once it became clear he was the club's preferred target. "Once I had found out I was the number one target from the important people at Liverpool it was quite an easy decision," he said.
Liverpool is a step up for Rodgers from his previous jobs at Watford, Reading and Swansea. He also worked under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea and insisted claims he was too inexperienced for the role were unfair.
"My pathway as a young coach has been different to most managers," he said. "I have actually been coaching and working in football for 20 years. At Chelsea I had experience of working with big players. I look at Kenny Dalglish, he was the manager (of Liverpool in 1985) at 34 and resigned at 39. I arrive here at 39."
Liverpool chairman Tom Werner claimed Rodgers would bring "attacking, relentless football" to the club. "In Brendan we have acquired a very exciting and talented and young manager," the American said. "He's a forward-thinking coach at the forefront of a generation of young managers and will bring to Liverpool attacking, relentless football."
Werner added: "We did speak to a number of people in the last few weeks, but I want to say Brendan was the only person we made an offer to. He was our first choice and the right choice."
Earlier, Rodgers admitted the chance to manage a footballing "dynasty" like Liverpool was too good to turn down. "For me, the only way I was going to leave Swansea was for a big club, and I mean a big club," Rodgers told the South Wales Evening Post. "It was an extremely, extremely difficult decision because my plan was always to stay here at Swansea for a number of years.
"I have always been up front and honest. I have always said that I wouldn't be here forever and that one day I would go, but I honestly never thought the opportunity would come round now. In my life and in my football, I have been very happy in Swansea.
"But when an opportunity to work at a club which is more than a club comes round, it's a professional challenge which is too good to turn down. Liverpool are one of the dynasties of the game. They have won five European Cups and their status is up there with AC Milan, Inter Milan, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich."
Rodgers won praise for his attractive style of play at Swansea and initially turned down an approach from Liverpool before it became clear he was their preferred target. He added: "I turned them down once out of respect, because I didn't want to go into a process and disrespect anything about Swansea.
"When they come in a second time and make you their number one target, then you have to think. We have seen over a number of years that the number of British coaches who get a chance at the big clubs is very few. When those opportunities come, and they may come only once, you have got to make a decision."