Brendan Rodgers

Rodgers' Respect For 'Exceptional' Pochettino

Brendan Rodgers is looking forward to the prospect of a tactical battle with a manager in Mauricio Pochettino who he believes has done an 'exceptional' job in north London.
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- Leicester City host Tottenham Hotspur at King Power Stadium on Saturday (12:30pm BST kick-off)
- Brendan Rodgers has spoken of the respect he has for Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino
- The Northern Irishman says the progress made by Pochettino in the capital has been 'exceptional'
- Live coverage of Saturday's match is available from 9:30am BST on LCFC Radio

Leicester City welcome Tottenham Hotspur to King Power Stadium on Saturday in an encounter in which both sides will be looking to solidify their places in the Premier League's top-six.

Discussing the clash with the national press on Thursday afternoon, Rodgers elaborated on the admiration he has for Spurs manager Pochettino and the nature of the challenge his side will pose for City.

Rodgers faced Pochettino twice as Liverpool manager in the 2014/15 season, winning on both occasions, and the Northern Irishman reflected on the 'brilliant' progress made by Tottenham since.

"It’s the first time I have come across him now for a few years and he’s a very talented coach," Rodgers said. "I think he’s done a brilliant job there.

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Manager Brendan Rodgers took questions from the national media during his pre-Tottenham Hotspur press conference on Thursday.

"My Liverpool team played against his team early on in his reign at White Hart Lane, so I got a good chance to see where he was at at that early stage of his career at Tottenham.

"When I look now at where he’s at, where he’s taken the club and what he’s done in the period that he’s been there… it’s been exceptional."

Despite Spurs having twice lost two-goal leads in three matches (vs. Arsenal and Olympiacos), Rodgers insists Pochettino's men will be a stern test for the Foxes this weekend.

"From time to time, you’re going to get like what happened last night (Wednesday), but this is a guy who has done a wonderful job.

I wouldn’t swap [Vardy] because he has so much to his game. That hunger. That appetite. The ability to score. I love a striker with that speed who can really stretch the game in behind.

Brendan Rodgers

"Him and his staff there, what they’ve created – when I look back and think of the team that he had back then (in 2014/15), quite a number of the players that were there then, are still there now.

"The improvements he’s made to them, the development that he’s given them, the status he’s given the club… he’s done an absolutely brilliant job and I think that he will continue to do that."

Speaking more specifically about Leicester, the former Celtic manager expanded on the respect he has for Jamie Vardy's quality as the Club's all-time top Premier League scorer continues to impress.

"I wouldn’t swap him because he has so much to his game," he continued. "That hunger. That appetite. The ability to score. I love a striker with that speed who can really stretch the game in behind.

"Like I say, I’ve worked closely with Jamie now for a period of time and there’s not too many in world football that you would swap him for.

"He’s just got this incredible knack in terms of pressing the game, reading the game.

"He’s tactically so good, and at this level, in the most competitive league in the world, he’s up there with the very elite strikers – so I’m very fortunate to have him here."

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