Steven Gerrard Right to Call for New Contract for Liverpool Boss Brendan Rodgers

Karl Matchett@@karlmatchettFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2014

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 08:  Liverpool Manager Brendan Rodgers applauds during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Arsenal at Anfield on February 8, 2014 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Liverpool's thumping 3-0 victory at Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday sparked further talk of a title challenge by the Reds, with yet more praise going to manager Brendan Rodgers.

Having taken Liverpool from the lower reaches of the top half to potentially within a point of the league leaders—should they win their game in hand—in just two seasons, Rodgers is rightly getting a lot of attention for the manner of his team's technical and tactical extravagance and levels of excitement.

Captain Steven Gerrard has spoken, as per Mirror Football, of how the club needs to act quickly to tie the manager down to a new contract and ensure he remains in place for years to come.

He's right in what he says, but the club are also right in putting off any talks for the moment—while everybody concentrates on trying to make what has been a very good season into an unforgettable one.


Gerrard and Rodgers

The love-in between Gerrard and Rodgers has flowered of late and bloomed at much the same rate as Liverpool's title charge; the manager called his captain "peerless" and "wonderful," as per, while the skipper has been quick to praise his boss as the "best man manager" he's had in his career, as per BBC Sport.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 18:  Brendan Rodgers, manager of Liverpool talks to Steven Gerrard during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Aston Villa at Anfield on January 18, 2014 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Both terrific competitors with an innate will to win, the pair have matched up rather marvellously this season as Rodgers shifted Gerrard's position in the team to keep him central and important—and still playing as a part of the attack, despite a deeper and more defensive role in midfield.

The two, one off the pitch and one on it, are clear leaders and between them cajole, inspire and demand big performances from others in red.


Why Rodgers Deserves Deal

Rodgers hasn't just reinvigorated Liverpool, he has taken them from a misfiring and predictable outfit into a younger, more vibrant and far more attack-minded team.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 21:   Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers speaks with Joe Allen during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Cardiff City at Anfield at Anfield on December 21, 2013 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Clive Brun
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Possession, goals, movement and creativity; Rodgers has made a team in his own image which at present is likely surpassing the expectations of everybody connected to the club.

The team is far from the finished product and, should Champions League football be assured for next season, there will actually be even more work to do to make sure Liverpool stay around the top sides in the league, but the fact he's gotten them there shows he can do it.

Rodgers is the man to lead this group of young players, continue adding to them and progress the team as he sees fit. A long-term contract would be just reward for his efforts so far.


Club's Position and Value of Waiting

First and foremost, nobody wants to take the chance to interfere with a possible title run-in.

Liverpool are four points off the top; win their game in hand and they go a single point behind Chelsea, who have still to come to Anfield. Contracts and talk of everything else can simply wait.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 16:  Steven Gerrard of Liverpool celebrates scoring the first goal with his team-mates during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on March 16, 2014 in Manchester, England.
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

The club want big success so will happily play out the season and see what transpires; for his part, Rodgers will do the same—money isn't his primary concern, a rejected chance to manage Chelsea shows that—but a title or a runner-up spot on his CV already would probably push his claims for control as much as financial remuneration more than a simple top-four finish.

In the end, everything will be sorted over the summer; Rodgers' new contract, the money to spend for next season and the transfers which go with it.

The prestige, value and length of contract that the club eventually and inevitably put in front of the manager could alter significantly over the last nine Premier League matches of the season.