Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has dismissed speculation about his job by saying he is the best man to lead the club and that he expects to be in charge next season.
The Northern Irishman came out fighting on Thursday after defeat by Aston Villa in Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final ensured he became the first Liverpool manager since the 1950s not to win silverware in his first three seasons in charge.
The club are currently out of the Champions League qualification places and have developed a reputation for stumbling on the big occasion.
Rodgers has also come in for criticism for last season’s recruitment policy that saw several players arrive in the wake of striker Luis Suarez’s departure to Barcelona.
He does not feel, however, that his job is under any immediate threat.
“Do I expect to be manager next season? Very much so, yes. I don’t think there’s anyone better,” Rodgers told reporters.
“That’s the reality of how I see it. Three months ago I was a tactical genius, performing to a good level.
“We lost a couple of games, some important games, and now you’re not so good. But that is football, that’s what will happen, people will speculate.”
Outgoing Borussia Dortmund manager Juergen Klopp, who announced last week that he was quitting the German club at the end of the season, has been linked by British media with a move to Anfield.
“There will always be people linked with this job because it’s such a great club,” Rodgers added.
“In my time alone there have been lots of names mentioned. This is a club that’s worldwide so there’s absolutely no problem, it’s something that happens all the time if you lose a couple of games.
“We’ve had former managers linked here with the job before and that will continue for however long I’m here — whether you’re doing good, bad or indifferent.”
Liverpool, who are fifth in the Premier League and seven points behind fourth-placed Manchester City, visit West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.