Liverpool Midfielder Upset by Manager's Public Criticism
By Chandrashekar Srinivasan | October 7, 2012 11:48 PM EST
Liverpool winger Stewart Downing has hit out at manager Brendan Rodgers, after the Northern Irishman questioned his commitment to the club. Downing, 28, transferred to Anfield from Aston Villa in July 2011, for a fee reported to be £20m. The England international came with considerable pressure to re-create the form that made him one of Villa's best players in 2010-11 and arguably one of the best Englishmen in the Premier League in that period.
Unfortunately, apart from a few highs, which included a goal against Oldham Athletic in an FA Cup match and a Man of the Match trophy for his role in helping Liverpool win the League Cup, Downing has been largely anonymous for the Reds. In fact, he has yet to score or create a goal for the club in the league.
His performances led Rodgers, who took over as Liverpool manager in the summer, to question his value to the club and his commitment to the fans. The former Middlesbrough player has clearly taken exception to the remarks. The manager's criticism came after the Reds surrendered a 1-0 half-time lead against Italian club Udinese to lose their recent UEFA Europa League match 2-3. Rodgers was so furious he called his entire side lazy but has also had particular complaints about Downing and Spanish left-back Jose Enrique.
"It hasn't quite worked out for him [Downing] as he would want it. The big challenge for him now is that commitment to the cause to fight, because he has the qualities," the Guardian quoted Rodgers as saying. "You have to work hard, you have to fight for the shirt. If you don't do that then longer-term you won't be here."
"I was upset and you'll have to ask the manager what he meant with that quote. I always try my best," Downing was quoted as saying by The Sun. "I'm disappointed. Yet if that's how the manager sees it, there's not a lot I can do about it. I just have to keep working hard and do what he tells me to do. I have to perform on the field and get my head down. I would have preferred if it was private but that's the way it is."
However, the winger ruled out any thought of demanding a transfer and insisted he would remain to prove his manager and critics wrong. He also ruled out a temporary move, to regain self-confidence and gain playing time.
"I've got three years left on my contract and I'm going nowhere," he stressed, adding, "I will fight and I am here to see my contract out and I'd love to stay longer. I've worked hard to get here, so I don't want to leave in a rush."
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Join the Conversation
- 2014 Davis Cup Final: Switzerland Vs. France - Roger Federer Vs. Gael Monfils Live Streaming Info and Preview
- Michael Schumacher Update: Rep Responds To Streiff’s Comments—‘He’s Neither A Friend Nor Has He Ever Visited Him’
- LA Lakers: Kobe Bryant Attributes Past Outburst Against Dwight Howard To 'Heat Of The Moment,' Doesn't Feel The Same Way As Durant Does
- Boxing News: Freddie Roach Not Buying Into Arum's Claim Of Pacquiao v Mayweather In 2015, Claims 'Money' Will Say 'No' After Algieri Fight
- Door Is Open For Brock Lesnar To Make UFC Return -- Dana White
- US Plane Flying Over Russian Skies Spotted; Vladimir Putin Ready For 'Practical Cooperation' With US
- Black Friday 2014 Sale: Top Deals On Game Consoles Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Wii U And More
- Walmart Pre-Black Friday 2014 Sale On Nov. 21, 2014 Includes Discounts On The 'NBA 2K15' For PS4 And The 'Skylanders Trap Team’ Starter Kit [WATCH VIDEO]
- Alleged 'Microsoft Lumia 1030' Front Panel Leaked With Capacitive Buttons; 'Xbox One' Owners To Get Free Goodies On Anniversary
- More Bad News for Android 5.0 Lollipop As Problems Come In for Nexus and Other Devices
- Cold War 2: Russia, China And North Korea’s Blacklisted Company Fortify Alliance -- Reports
- Black Friday 2014 Sale: Top 9 TV Deals Starting From $99 To $899