The end of a dynasty often brings turmoil.
With the news now confirmed that Steven Gerrard will join MLS giants LA Galaxy at the end of the Premier League season, manager Brendan Rodgers will undoubtedly be weighing up his options over who he’ll get to fill his legendary boots.
Whenever a stalwart player or manager leaves a club, they leave a cavernous imprint that is often difficult to replace. With the exception of Frank Lampard at Chelsea, teams inevitably struggle when they no longer have access to their former stars.
But where an exit differs from an injury is the feeling of a shift in the sands of the culture of the club. When a veteran retires it feels more like a little death than a person going to continue his job elsewhere.
What is more worrying is that Liverpool don’t look as though they have what it takes to weather the early storm without him. As good as Jordan Henderson’s been, he’s nowhere near the level that Gerrard was at at his age.
Gerrard has singled Henderson out to be his successor in the Liverpool midfield, but this would be a huge mistake. The Reds have always relied on Gerrard to get them out of a jam. Whether it be a late free kick, a penalty under pressure, or a thunderbolt from 35 yard, he has always been there to bail them out, almost singlehandedly.
Henderson cannot do this, and expecting him to do so frequently would frankly be unfair. He has already come under enough pressure and when it comes to inspiration, he sadly falls a little short.
What Liverpool need is a player of true quality, ideally someone world class. Someone they can turn to for inspiration when the chips are down. They have the money to bring in such a player, but will they actually do it?
Rodgers showed if anything last summer that he is not the most savvy when it comes to recruitment. That may be a slightly unfair statement given that a number of his new recruits could go on to do great things in a red shirt, but to push the club on from last season’s near miss they were the exact opposite of that they needed.
Luckily, there is still six months to go before they have to start worrying about it. They could bring somebody in this month, but that’ll be a task getting another team to part with a world class star in the middle of the season.
But over the summer, his scouts should be preparing to work overtime. This is Liverpool we’re talking about, they cannot afford to put a foot wrong.