Five areas where Brendan Rodgers got it wrong: Neil Humphreys
Wondering if Brendan Rodgers will get the sack is a futile exercise, rather like wondering if Mario Balotelli will score goals regularly.
It's not going to happen any time soon. Barring a catastrophic collapse, the Liverpool manager isn't going anywhere this season.
After overachieving in the previous campaign, the club's owners owe their manager a stay of execution at least.
But the Reds are woeful and Rodgers is the major culprit. Liverpool are not a team in transition, but one spiralling in decline.
Rodgers has got so many decisions, selections and purchases wrong this season. Here are five lows.
1 He just can't buy players
Since the summer of 2012, Rodgers has spent an eye-watering £215 million ($437m). To a man, they have mostly flailed and flopped like goldfish in a drying puddle.
Rodgers apologists who throw up Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho in his defence are beginning to sound like deluded supporters.
The straw-clutching is either wilfully ignorant or misinformed.
Besides, Coutinho's form is erratic at best, while Sturridge's injury problems were consistent enough to at least warrant a red flag before he joined the club.
As for the rest, pick a player at random in the last three years.
Try Joe Allen or Fabio Borini from 2012. Or consider Iago Aspas, Mamadou Sakho or Tiago Ilori from 2013. Or perhaps even contemplate Emre Can, Alberto Moreno or Rickie Lambert in 2014 (we'll get to Balotelli.)
The threshold for failure inevitably alters in the Premier League, depending on the club's pedigree and position.
Few managers in the bottom half could survive three or four poor signings.
Those in the top half might struggle with six flops on their charge sheet.
And, if any other manager had made more than 10 terrible signings in a two-year period, well, there hasn't been one.
At least 12 of Rodgers' recruits have been disastrous and the dozing dozen could become the terrible 20 by the end of this campaign. Any other manager would've been sacked already.
2 Obvious holes not plugged
If Liverpool's wretched form continues, the League Managers' Association may consider calling DHL to pick up Rodgers' Manager of the Year trophy and send it to Luis Suarez.
The Uruguayan not only took the title race to the final day, he also bought his manager time to fix his defence. But Rodgers didn't take it.
Whether he thought the freakish scoring machine would stay at Anfield to mask his side's defensive shortcomings once again misses the point.
Liverpool have lacked consistency and cohesion around their own penalty box for more than two seasons.
No strike force can overcome the mistakes of both its opponents defence and its own indefinitely.
If Steven Gerrard carries the weight of last season's failure psychologically, Glen Johnson appears to carry it literally. Jason Puncheon pulled no punches. Johnson looked like he was pulling a tractor. But this is not a new problem.
Martin Skrtel suffers from a nervous disposition when marking quick strikers. This is not a new problem.
Simon Mignolet triggers palpitations among his teammates in the penalty box. This is not a new problem.
All of which leaves Dejan Lovren a pale imitation of his former imperious self at St Mary's.
This is a new problem, partially caused by Rodgers not addressing all the old ones. Suarez's exit wasn't the beginning of Liverpool's demise. He just accelerated the process. Rodgers used the Uruguayan to cover the cracks last season, but he can't use Suarez's name now.
Like Liverpool's defence, the argument is full of holes.
3 Rodgers bought plodders with no pace
If further evidence were needed that Liverpool's manager should not be trusted with spending the money inside his own birthday cards, Yannick Bolasie was happy to oblige at Crystal Palace. The Man of the Match cost £150,000 ($305,000).
He's hardly a metronome of reliability, but the Palace winger boasts the essential attributes required of the average Premier League forward.
He's fast, unpredictable and runs at retreating fullbacks. He traumatised Javier Maquillo. He should terrify Rodgers.
The beleaguered coach not only buys the wrong players, he also buys slow ones. Take away Raheem Sterling and Liverpool are utterly bereft of pace.
They either lack the natural speed of Bolasie or the dribbling acceleration of Eden Hazard, Angel di Maria and Alexis Sanchez.
Balotelli has never been blessed with natural pace, Rickie Lambert is 32, Adam Lallana's cerebral qualities do not rely on his speed and Allen and Gerrard take on water-carrying duties. Despite spending £215 million, the Reds are light on road-runners.
4 He can't drop Gerrard
Only a sadist takes comfort in the decline and fall of greatness. Gerrard ran fruitlessly between the lines against Palace, unsure where he was or what his opponent was doing.
Like Muhammad Ali flailing around against Larry Holmes, Gerrard was left dazed and confused by his diminishing powers and humbled by Joe Ledley, Mile Jedinak and Puncheon.
In his prime, Gerrard pummelled all three. Now he's a punch bag. Soon. he'll be a punchline. But his manager still stands at the side refusing to throw in the towel. He can't.
Rodgers made more noise than a brass section trumpeting his skipper's reinvention as a quarterback, sweeping up anything untoward between the lines.
With the help of Jordan Henderson last season, the supporting role paid off. But Gerrard lost Henderson's legs against Palace and he's clearly losing heart.
And still, Rodgers won't end his captain's suffering.
5 The ego ran wild
A striker did throw a spanner into Rodgers' works, but it wasn't Suarez. It was Balotelli.
His signing was an acknowledgement of the ego over-ruling common sense. Every other manager had failed to rein in the spirited rebel.
Every other manager had insisted the Italian was unmanageable. But Rodgers was the new Svengali of adoring Scousers.
He took the unlikely lads from Liverpool on a magical mystery tour. On Merseyside, he had almost turned water into wine. He was the maker of miracles.
He could exorcise the ghosts of Jose Mourinho and Roberto Mancini and tame the beast within Balotelli. He was wrong.
Balotelli bowed to history rather than his manager's hubris, forcing Liverpool fans to painfully reassess last season's romantic run in the title race.
Maybe, just maybe, Rodgers was not the Messiah. He was helped by a very naughty boy from Uruguay.