Brendan Rodgers

It’s My Job To Maximise Leicester City’s Potential, Says Rodgers

New Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers says a structured and coordinated approach will be at the heart of his stratagem to herald a new era at the Football Club.
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The Northern Irishman joined the Foxes on Tuesday before watching his new side register a 2-1 victory over Brighton & Hove Albion at King Power Stadium later that evening.

Ahead of his maiden match as City’s manager, Rodgers spoke glowingly about the talent within the Club’s first team squad on Friday and the potential for improvement over coming seasons.

Rodgers has now overseen two training sessions at Belvoir Drive this week and, following a third on Saturday, the former Liverpool and Celtic manager will take charge at Watford on Sunday (12pm GMT kick-off).

Discussing his decision to leave Celtic, where he won a double of successive ‘trebles’ in Glasgow, the 46-year-old explained that the opportunity to take City forward was 'too good to turn down'

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Brendan Rodgers
Brendan Rodgers

After a morning of training, Rodgers heads into King Power Stadium to address the media.

“The challenge of coming in and working against top players and top coaches with a club who wants to move forward and keep progressing was ultimately the real draw,” he told a packed media suite on Filbert Way.

“The expectancy is to challenge for a European place and look to win a trophy. That has to be the expectation.

“What Leicester achieved a few years ago (winning the Premier League title) was an incredible story, it’s recognised as one of the most incredible stories in the history of football.

“That will always been difficult to repeat. However, after a couple of years of instability in mid-table, our objective is to move.

“For me, coming in at this stage of the season, [I will] assess where we’re at over these last remaining games and see where we can look to improve.

The last couple of days have been brilliant, getting to know the players, getting a sense of where they’re at.

Brendan Rodgers

“I don’t want to put any pressure on the players because we want to improve.

“For the remainder of the season, we’ll look to do that and then obviously, in the summer, we’ll have a window to look to improve the squad again.”

After starting the process of familiarising himself with his players and outlining his vision for a new playing style, Rodgers has been enthused by the Club's stars' willingness to learn.

“The last couple of days have been brilliant, getting to know the players, getting a sense of where they’re at,” he continued.

“They’ve been very, very good – there’s real quality and intensity in their work – and there’s areas that we have to improve in our game model but that’s something that will come in time.”

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Brendan Rodgers
Brendan Rodgers

A large representation from the national media was in attendance on Friday afternoon.

Speaking to the media for more than an hour in total, Rodgers also took the opportunity to explain his aspirations to develop Leicester’s on-field approach to matches.

“The team needs to play with a better intensity,” he said. “When I’ve seen the games, analysed the games, we certainly need to be more coordinated in our game so everything is synchronised.

“Firstly we need to defend with a bigger pressure in the game and I’ve seen that in the last few days that the players are very willing in how we want to do that.

“How my team normally plays is very structured, with improvisation at the top end of the field.

Between now and the end of the season, we want to finish as high as we can, and it’s going to take a little bit of time to introduce methods.

Brendan Rodgers

“We need to get that structure in place that will allow them to be really aggressive when they defend and then we have to play with a faster tempo and speed in our game.

“All of that will come, it’s training, it’s work, it’s what you do on the training field. It’s what I love to do and the players are responding very well.”

While Rodgers is keen to introduce ideas which may take time to develop, Leicester’s new manager insists that progress can be made this season with 10 Premier League fixtures to go.

“I need to make an impact now, that’s what I want to do,” he stated. “I’m observing and watching different aspects of the team and how we can do better.

“Between now and the end of the season, we want to finish as high as we can, and it’s going to take a little bit of time to introduce methods.

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Brendan Rodgers
Brendan Rodgers

Brendan Rodgers talks to the press at King Power Stadium.

“It gives me time to do that between now and the end of the season.

“If we’re speaking about freedom, my teams are very structured, they need structure, they need coordinating, which is something you do on the training field.

“The response has been brilliant, they’re top quality players who I believe will get better and better. The squad has real potential in it and it’s my job to try and maximise that.”

Live coverage of Brendan Rodgers' first match as Leicester City manager - at Watford on Sunday - is available on LCFC Radio from 10am GMT.

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