Road to Red-emption: Rodgers’ journey back from the brink

He almost ended Liverpool's title agony in 2014. Now's the time to put things right.

Brendan Rodgers Liverpool


Five years on from his failure to win the Premier League for Liverpool, former boss Brendan Rodgers finally has a shot at red-emption as his Leicester side could derail Manchester City’s title challenge.

Here, we take a look at the long and arduous road to ‘Red-emption’ the Northern Irishman has taken…

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers (R) talks to Swansea City manager Michael Laudrup before the English Premier League football match between Swansea City and Liverpool at The Liberty stadium in Swansea, south Wales on November 25, 2012. The match ended in a goal-less draw. AFP PHOTO/ANDREW YATES. RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or “live” services. Online in-match use limited to 45 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. (Photo credit should read ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)

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13th April 2014. Liverpool have just beaten title rivals Man City 3-2 at Anfield to move 2pts clear at the top of the table with just four games remaining. The stadium is a cauldron of noise. It’s pandemonium on the pitch. Captain Steven Gerrard spots a TV camera and organises an impromptu huddle for the benefit of everyone at home. He rips a pubic hair out to induce a tear for dramatic effect while screaming ‘we do not let this slip’. Brendan Rodgers is crowned Liverpool’s new king.

27th April 2014. Liverpool are 5pts clear at the top of the Premier League. The league title is finally on its way to Anfield. All they have to do is beat Chelsea at home. Piece of piss? But three minutes into first-half stoppage time, Stevie Gerrard slips like a new-born foal on an ice-rink which allows Demba Ba to race through on goal and score.

It finishes 2-0 to Chelsea and Brendan Rodgers shits the bed that night in an unfortunate accident.

5th May 2014. A night that will forever be remembered by those wishing Liverpool would fuck up their title bid, as ‘Crystanbul’. 3-0 up and seemingly coasting against ‘nothing to play for’ Crystal Palace with ten minutes to go, Rodgers masterminded Liverpool’s most ridiculous 3-3 scoreline since their team of Djimi Traorés and Vladimir Smicers came back against the Paolo Maldinis and Andrea Pirlos of AC Milan in 2005.

11th May 2014. Despite Liverpool’s 2-1 win over Newcastle on the final day of the season, Man City clinch a second Premier League title in their six-year history. Liverpool surrendered a 5pt lead with three just games to go and are still without a league title since 1990. Rodgers goes home that night and tries to flog some boxes of ‘Liverpool Premier League Champions 2013/2014’ on eBay.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Steven Gerrard of Liverpool in action during the UEFA Champions League Group B match between Liverpool and FC Basel on December 9, 2014 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

4th October 2015. Seventeen months after Gerrard’s slip cost his club the title, Rodgers lost his job as manager of Liverpool FC, following a run of one win in 9 games which left them 10th in the table. In a parting statement, Rodgers thanked the Liverpool board for showing great character in sacking him and also revealed he was taking a sabbatical from football to perfect the art of self-portraiture.

9th January 2016. Months after failing to come to terms with his Liverpool dismissal, Rodgers checked himself into an exclusive Californian resort for Hollywood’s ‘tired and emotional’ stars.

The Northern Irishman spoke fondly of his time on the west coast, during which he forged a title-winning table-tennis doubles partnership with actor Gary Busey.

29th March 2016. Brendan spends two weeks meditating at a Buddhist temple in the Himalayas. Upon emerging from the temple, Rodgers confirms he’s finally at peace regards his Liverpool sacking and thanked the monks for their tremendous hospitality and great character. The Carnlough native also announces he’s ready to return to football management.

20th May 2016. Brendan Rodgers is appointed the new boss of Celtic FC. During his inaugural press conference, Rodgers declares he’d like to emulate the achievements of Celtic’s other legendary managers, such as Ronny Deila, Lou Macari and John Barnes.

12th July 2016. While many Northern Irishmen would prefer to be at home rioting with the police, Brendan Rodgers took charge of his first competitive game away to European giants, Gilbraltar’s Lincoln Red Imps. Celtic lost the first leg 1-0 which prompted Rodgers to say: ‘This is no embarrassment’. However, many Celtic fans described the result as ‘no acceptable’.

27th May 2017. Rodgers’ Celtic defeat Aberdeen 2-1 to win the Scottish Cup, securing a domestic treble and ending the season unbeaten in domestic competitions in the process. Rodgers and his victorious squad celebrate their achievement by beating up a child with its hands tied behind its back.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – DECEMBER 02: Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers is seen with the trophy during the Betfred Cup Final between Celtic and Aberdeen at Hampden Park on December 2, 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

17th December 2017. Celtic are humiliated 4-0 by Hearts which ends their record-breaking 69 game unbeaten run. After the game, Rodgers remarked it was his worst 69 experience since his now ex-wife caught him playing away from home.

19th May 2018. Rodgers wins the first ever ‘double treble’ in Scottish football history with a 2-0 win over Motherwell in the Scottish Cup Final. After the game, Rodgers reveals there’s been a ‘Chinese approach’. After weeks of speculation and even though Glasgow Chinese takeaway offered to match Celtic’s wages, Brendan decides to stay with the Scottish champions.

26th February 2019. with Celtic 8pts clear at the top of the SPL, Rodgers confirms what everyone thinks about Scottish football as he departs to take charge of mid-table English side Leicester City. During his first press conference, the Northern Irishman told journalists he hoped he could be ‘even half as successful’ as Dave Bassett was at the club.

6th May 2019. Brendan Rodgers stands on the King Power Stadium pitch at full-time, his arms aloft, celebrating a famous 3-0 victory over Man City, courtesy of a Jamie Vardy hat trick. Liverpool, having won 18-0 against Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle U11s the previous Saturday, now stand on the brink of the title with a game remaining. The demons of Brendan’s 2014 failure have finally been exorcised… ???

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