DANNY MURPHY: Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers is the man to bring Manchester United forward

DANNY MURPHY: Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers is for every reason the man to move Manchester United forward – he is an ideal replacement for Ralf Rangnick this summer

  • It’s a shame for Manchester United’s Brendan Rodgers once managed by Liverpool
  • Otherwise, the Northern Irish would be ideal for their long-term project
  • I think the Red Devils should consider taking a risk in appointing Rodgers next

It’s a shame for Manchester United that Brendan Rodgers was once in charge of Liverpool. Otherwise I would see him as the ideal person to lead the long-term project at Old Trafford.

Past associations needn’t be a deal breaker but they don’t help, as Rafa Benitez finds out at Everton, so Mauricio Pochettino looks set to be the favorite to lead next season unless Ralf Rangnick does so well that he has to stay.

Rodgers ticks so many boxes: he has extensive experience but is still young enough to have the hunger and drive to move United forward.

Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers (pictured) is the ideal man to take Manchester United forward

In football, people are judged on their last game rather than on the work of a career, but that’s unfair. Leicester’s form has not been great this season, but even with a long list of injuries they are in the top half and leading their Europa League group.

It’s been just over six months since they won the FA Cup beating Manchester United in the quarter-finals and Chelsea in the final. And twice in a row they came close to qualifying for the Champions League.

Rodgers knows what it’s like to be in the limelight after managing Liverpool and Celtic. It’s exciting to think what he could do with the squad at Old Trafford, as his track record of improving players is brilliant. Youri Tielemans and Harvey Barnes are just two examples at Leicester.

He is tactically very cunning. During the season with Liverpool, when he nearly won the title, he adapted a 4-3-3 to a midfield diamond in which Raheem Sterling played behind Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge. Suarez’s form that season is a testament to how Rodgers can deal with big players with big egos.

There are questions about the defensive side of his teams but I would like to point out that at Anfield he did not have the budget to sign a Virgil van Dijk or Alisson.

The Foxes take on Steven Gerrard's Aston Villa on Sunday - both could go to bigger clubs in the future

The Foxes take on Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa on Sunday – both could go to bigger clubs in the future

Northern Irishman Rodgers could be the man to continue Ralf Rangnick's Old Trafford project

Northern Irishman Rodgers could be the man to continue Ralf Rangnick’s Old Trafford project

Even Jurgen Klopp struggled a bit before they arrived. Unless you have world-class players everywhere, you have to choose to some extent whether you want to focus on your offense or defense. It’s hard to do both successfully.

On Sunday, Leicester will face Aston Villa, led by Steve Gerrard, who will be pleased with the start he has made there.

It’s no secret that he got frustrated when Rodgers didn’t play a couple of big games at Liverpool, but I’m sure there is now mutual respect between the two men rather than any animosity. They had a good rivalry led by Celtic and Rangers and it will be a fascinating game this afternoon.

No disrespect to Aston Villa and Leicester, but Gerrard and Rodgers have what it takes to be managerial rivals at Liverpool and United.

United may not go for Rodgers, partly because of his previous job at Liverpool, but I think they should consider taking the risk.