“They have now felt the feeling of victory, the feeling of winning a trophy,” Brendan Rogers said Sky Sports“Once you do this, it will take you to a different place. We now know what it takes to win. You want more.”
Rogers is reflecting on Leicester City’s victory over Chelsea in the FA Cup, which is the first time in the club’s 137-year history. Since then, they returned to Wembley, defeated Manchester City in the Community Shield, and kicked off the Premier League season by defeating Wolves.
I have enjoyed many such clubs in recent years. This is a special moment. As Rogers will continue to explain, Leicester now wants to look forward, inspired by these moments, inspired by their amazing new training ground. But he can simply recall.
He has looked back at all this. The strike of Yuri Tillermans. Amazing stay by Kasper Schmeichel. “Yuri’s goal and Casper’s save lit up the final. For the supporters, this is a beautiful day. It will be an unforgettable memory for us in Leicester City.”
He hopes that the legacy of victory will continue.
“Some of them have won trophies before, many have not. Defeating a team that has just beaten Real Madrid with two legs, this team that will obviously become the European champion is a huge psychological excitement for the players.”
For Rogers personally, this is also an important step. Having won seven trophies in three seasons with the Celtics, he is no stranger to success, but this was the first important trophy he won in England. Perhaps, for someone who was once so close, this is a catharsis.
He was the first to mention that he became the first Northern Irish manager to win the FA Cup since Terry Neill in 1979, and Harry Redknapp since 2008. The first British manager since. A more personal memory is of receiving a call from Sir Ferguson.
“He called me, he and I have now won the FA Cup in England and Scotland,” he explained, his expression more vivid. “I’m very proud of it. For me, it’s really special. From a personal point of view, it means a lot.”
Rogers’ status as one of the best coaches in the game is unquestionable. This year, his team has beaten Manchester United at home and away. He also managed to make the team coached by Guardiola, Thomas Tuchel and Jurgen Klopp better.
He quickly attributed the credit to the players, but these are all victories for the Champions League champion coach planned from the sideline. In the game against Liverpool, the diamond formation helped win the game. Recently, major tactical adjustments have been made in the games against Chelsea and Manchester City.
“In the Community Shield, we sent two forwards. When the momentum was shifting towards them, we made the players energized and brought a different momentum to the game.” Substitute Kelechi Iheanacho won and switched to determine it. Late penalty.
In the FA Cup final, very different changes took place. Wes Morgan stepped up from the bench. As we all know, this will be his last appearance for the club. This is the plan. “I obviously thought about it before the game happened,” Rogers said.
“I said to him,’If we win and they let Olivier Giroud play, can you give us 10 or 15 minutes at the end? Will you lead there?’ You are writing it , How it will happen. It doesn’t always work like that, but we are prepared for different scenarios.”
There was a similar example in the first weekend of the season, when Rogers turned to newly signed Jennick Westgard with half an hour left in the game against Wolves. Again, the momentum has changed. The change in shape helps ensure that Leicester City sees the game.
“This gave them some other thinking because our system has changed. I just think we need to keep him calm during the game. I also think he allows us to play and penetrate the line. When he comes in, we play Be more calm.”
He knows that profits are tight. The transfer to Manchester City may be considered too bold in scoring levels, and the changes against Chelsea and Wolves were too cautious in protecting the single-goal lead. Either way, Rogers thinks this is his job.
“I am always active in games,” he explained. “I don’t want to leave and say,’I wish I could think of this.’ I always prefer to do this because I think 8 out of 10 times will work for you. One or two times won’t. I can bear it. But I would rather this way.”
It comes from “thousands of games since becoming a young coach” and the experience that comes with it. “You have a feeling for the game, you have a feeling for the system.” Not only the manager himself, but also most importantly, the players. They can now adjust better.
“You have to adapt to modern games. The teams here basically always play in the same capacity. We will actively attack the game. But we need to be flexible. We need to be able to play different shapes and different systems.
“The players understand this now. The players are always very clear. We discuss through it. We show them that this is what can happen in the game. So they are ready for change-if it has to If it comes. It just comes from the feeling of the game.”
Today, Rogers sees this more and more from his team.
When speaking on the club’s training ground, he recalled a meeting he had just witnessed, which illustrates this point. “I watched a game we played this morning, 11 vs. 11, but the mentality in the game was different from the mentality I had when I first played.”
There is greater depth. On the offensive end, Patterson Dhaka and Kelley Ishinacho pushed Jamie Vardy to a place. Boubakary Soumare is a promising midfield addition. When James Justin and Timothy Castagne returned, the choice of full-back looked particularly strong.
Wesley Fofana’s severe ankle injury was a huge blow. “He is incredible, and I look forward to his development this year.” But there will be no excuses. “I try not to be too disappointed with what we don’t have. This is just to maximize our talents.”
He believes that there are enough competitions to participate in all competitions. Last season’s Europa League exit was frustrating. “We are injured, and then you try to prioritize where we are. Unfortunately, we cannot work as hard as we want. We have to make choices.”
This year, they started a competition among popular candidates. With the two domestic cup competitions, Leicester City will have their chance, even considering the huge budget of their current opponents, the competition with the top four has not become easier.
“Liverpool brought their players back. In any case, Chelsea are strong. They brought in Romelu Lukaku. Manchester City will speed up and maybe bring in one or two in front of the window. And Manchester United. That’s that. Four.
“But we can only control ourselves. If you light the torch and look at it, we are in a very good position as a club. We have always maintained our position there. The standards we set allow us to build this stronghold at the top of the league.
“It is always difficult for us to join some top teams in 38 games, but can we be there, can we stay competitive and stay at the top level? What we want is to be competitive, together Play with an identity and look forward to the challenge.
“If we can improve, if we can make the team as available as possible and get some players back, it will be good to be competitive in Europe. It will be good to run. We will seek real battles in all competitions. You never know what will happen.”
After speaking, he returned to his subject. They have tasted it now.
“It comes with time, patience and courage, but the boys have a feeling of winning something,” he added. “We want to maintain this state. Those European matches, winning the FA Cup and the Community Shield, all of which make the players feel that this is tangible.
“Victory is like this. And once you win, it’s a different feeling.”