at the Union Buildings in Pretoria
London – Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has hit back at critics who have pointed out that his record is no better than failed former Reds boss Roy Hodgson.
Rodgers' inconsistent side slumped to a 3-1 defeat at Stoke on Wednesday that left the Reds with 25 points from 19 league matches.
That disappointing total is exactly the same as Hodgson, now in charge of England, managed in his short reign at Anfield, which came to a premature end with his sacking in January 2011.
But Rodgers, who arrived from Swansea in the close-season, insists he isn't losing any sleep over his position because there is no comparison with the Hodgson era.
Rodgers benefits from a position of greater strength as he was the choice of owners Fenway Sports Group and, while his record may not be as good as predecessor Kenny Dalglish, he is working to a different set of objectives than those given to the Scot.
“I don't think about them to be honest, it is not something I am overly worried about,” he said of comparisons with Hodgson's record.
“I have been brought in here to do a job and the owners have been brilliant with me.
“The backing I've had from supporters has been incredible considering and that is the most important group really.
“They recognise what is going on, they understand like I would understand the frustration.”
Rodgers is adamant Liverpool are making progress despite their struggle to piece together a winning run and he believes his overhaul of the Reds' squad will gradually reap rewards.
“Any comparisons I don't really focus on and it is difficult to compare the two groups because there is a lot of youthfulness in this group but yet still a lot of growth left in the team,” he said.
“There is a lot of progressing to do because we're 10th in the table and this is a club which wants to be at the very top but the only way you can do that is by reconstruction of the work and building the squad.
“That is what is going to take a bit of time. I always say it's like a good meal - I'm not a great cook but a good meal takes a wee bit of time but also to offer a good meal you need good ingredients.
“That is something we will do over time and hopefully put a nice meal on the table for supporters.” – Sapa-AFP