Leicester City supporters expunged into delirium after the club confirmed the appointment of Brendan Rodgers as the new manager.
Only a couple days back, the club was bathing in an extremely heady environment after Claude Puel’s Leicester had succumbed to Crystal Palace. That seems like a long time ago now.
All of a sudden, a downbeat, lowly fanbase feels reinvigorated to the extent that you can almost define it as giddy. There’s positivity like never before and there’s newfound optimism like never before.
Above all, there is comity among the fans at last as they have finally found something to not argue about: that Rodgers is the right captain to steer a ship that was beginning to look like it could sink.
And this is an opinion that is not ill-founded at all. From his time at Swansea City, the 46-year old has been acknowledged as one of Europe’s best coaches whose teams reflect his own personality. They are imposing and entertaining – much like Rodgers himself.
Right from his inchoate stages, he has demonstrated admirable consistency in terms of the way his teams play, not to forget the results and the will to innovate and titivate. His last season with Liverpool being an exception, he has hardly failed to deliver at the very top level.
The footballing side apart, there’s something more valuable – or rather invaluable – that Rodgers brings with him: personality.
Modern-day football doesn’t just demand a manager who is good with his tactics et al, you need to be able to have an all-round impact vis-à-vis gaining full control of the dressing room, attracting top targets to the club and handling the egos in a dressing room.
Rodgers is a proven master of these arts. Anyone who has followed his managerial career knows just how very good a man-manager he is, and how stubborn he can be when it comes to sticking to the “my way or the highway” principle. If that’s bad news for someone like Jamie Vardy, then be it, because it’s what Leicester need. In his piece for BBC Sport, Chief Football Writer Phil McNulty very rightly wrote:
“Yes, it is understandable Leicester’s players and fans want to hark back to how the title was won but Rodgers must decide on his style and stick with it.
If the players do not like it they should be moved on, because someone must put a foot in the revolving door marked “manager” at the King Power Stadium.”
What he’ll do is that he’ll put every player exactly where he should be, the kind of act of valour that Leicester have been crying for since the sacking of Claudio Ranieri.
Rodgers will instantly command respect being as vocal as he is, and that’ll be a welcome change, a rare deviation from the player power trend at the King Power Stadium. This deviation is perhaps the most important lagniappe that Rodgers’ appointment brings – and with it, quite possibly a turning point in the club’s history.
Here’s a nice Brendan Rodgers quote, by the way:
“I use a quote with the players, ‘Per aspera ad astra’, which is Latin for ‘through adversity to the stars’.”