Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers targets next 18 months to 'really challenge' on the trophy front

Despite looking to the future, the Reds are in contention for the Premier League title this term

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers wants to leave a legacy at Anfield which will not just include silverware.

The Reds boss, more than halfway through his second season, has guided the club to second in the table and they remain on course to qualify for the Champions League for the first time since 2009.

But while a return to Europe's elite club competition remains the immediate priority, followed by winning trophies, Rodgers wants to look after the club in the long term.

"I've been satisfied in terms of the progress we have made but there is still a long way to go in terms of where I want to go with the whole project," he said.

"Hopefully it continues to grow. We have gone from a team who was looking to put a style of football in place - high energy, high tempo - to one who wants to have success running alongside that and success is getting into the Champions League.

"This first 18 months has been (about) implementing and introducing a lot of ideas which are hopefully bearing fruit and the next 18 months is about developing and enhancing that.

"Over the next 18 months we want to eventually be really challenging on the trophy front."

While the focus is on first-team success in the short term, Rodgers is not neglecting the future.

Having helped the likes of Raheem Sterling and Jon Flanagan establish regular roles in the senior squad, the Northern Irishman has also given youngsters like Andre Wisdom, Jordon Ibe, Brad Smith, Joao Teixeira, Jerome Sinclair, Stephen Sama, Jordan Rossiter, Cameron Brannigan first-team experience in one form or another.

"There's no point in having a youth system and an academy system in place if you're not going to look from within," Rodgers told LFCTV GO.

"For me and how I work, it's part of my definition of success. When I eventually retire from football I want to be able to look back and see that not only have I won trophies but I've developed a football club that has brought through their own players and individuals and made them better.

"Other managers may be different and might just be about purely winning trophies but for me success isn't just picking up the trophy at the end of the season.

"It's also about the football club, giving the value to young players and seeing them develop."

PA

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