Forget Klopp, Ancelotti’s The Entertainer To Bring Stability To Anfield
Ever since Brendan Rodgers received the transatlantic phone call that sealed his fate at Goodison Park on Sunday, there has been two names on everyone’s lips to succeed the outgoing Northern Irishman at Liverpool.
Most fans are salivating at the very thought of the charismatic Jurgen Klopp taking the reins, bringing with him his high tempo attacking game and goals from all over the pitch.
Carlo Ancelotti is seen as the safer, more experienced head, who can bring some much-needed stability to a Liverpool side that has spent most of the last 25 years since their last league title taking one step forward, two steps back.
However, this generation of football fans have short memories. Yes the Klopp-led Borussia Dortmund wowed audiences en route to successive Bundesliga crowns and a Champions League final appearance, but Klopp is not the only one with a penchant for entertainment.
Ancelotti is no stranger to thrilling crowds on these shores. His Chelsea side blockbustered their way to the double in 2009/10, notching a record 103 Premier League goals in the process.
The likeable Italian tactician has always worked his systems around the players at his disposal, and the freedom that his star men enjoyed contributed to the Blues’ success under his tutelage.
Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba enjoyed their most prolific seasons under Ancelotti, Florent Malouda looked like a different beast altogether, and the enigmatic Nicolas Anelka had never looked so menacing since his early days at Arsenal.
And it is not only in England that Ancelotti built his success on an exciting brand of football.
Sleeping giants AC Milan were without a domestic title in five years when Ancelotti arrived at the San Siro in 2001, but he left having built one of the greatest sides of all time.
With an attack spearheaded by Filippo Inzaghi, a midfield controlled by the effervescent Clarence Seedorf and a defence shored up by club legend Paolo Maldini, Ancelotti secured two Champions League titles during his tenure in Milan, and created a team still revered in the boot shaped country.
Let’s not forget the role he played in steering Real Madrid to that coveted La Decima after an agonising 12 year wait. Cristiano Ronaldo never looked as forlorn as he does today under Ancelotti’s watch.
We have heard fans comparing Klopp’s style to that of Rodgers, but is that meant to be a good thing?
Sixth, second and seventh is not progress for a club of Liverpool’s stature. Their title tilt in 2013/14 represented the pinnacle for Rodgers, and the manner in which the Reds went about it is still talked about on the red half of Stanley Park.
Where Rodgers came undone is that while he brought a free-flowing style rarely seen in the Premier League, his naivety exposed Liverpool when they needed a cool head – that’s where Ancelotti comes in.
This Liverpool squad is certainly not good enough to threaten at the top of the league, but the process can be started by a manager who is adaptable enough to get the most out if what he’s been given.
Ancelotti can ensure Christian Benteke is made target man, whilst keeping Daniel Sturridge the focal point of the attack. He can get Philippe Coutinho to show the consistency that frustrates the Reds faithful and he can shore up a backline that has looked vulnerable on occasion this season.
And what’s more, Ancelotti has a track record of eking out the best from his players, whilst creating a positive moral in the dressing room, no matter how big the ego.
It is a win-win situation in reality for Liverpool fans, as Klopp is a fine coach, but given the choice, Ancelotti ticks those extra boxes.
Dealing with the meddling from Fenway Sports Group is meat and drink to a coach who has worked harmoniously under the totalitarian Florentino Perez and Silvio Berlusconi, and given time, as Liverpool cannot be fixed overnight, he can draw on all his experience to guide the Reds back up the table.
And we might see some goals on the way, you never know.