The MOTY Race: is Brendan Rodgers Underrated?

Nearly did it with Liverpool, getting closer with Leicester

Following Leicester City’s 2-0 win over Chelsea, Paul Merson was quick to heap praise onto the Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers. Merson claimed that neither Pep Guardiola or Jurgen Klopp could achieve what Rodgers is currently doing with the Foxes as they sit just two points off the top with a significantly tighter budget and very specific transfer patterns.

While much of the title talk has been about the Manchester clubs and Liverpool, Leicester have found themselves very much in the mix and look just as well equipped for a title charge than the reigning champions at this moment and are certainly in better form.

Having built a squad that are now third favourites for the title at 20/1, just how good is Brendan Rodgers and are we once again underrating this man?

Leicester City Odds

skybet

LEICESTER TO GET 75+ POINTS @ 7/2

Isn't the praise for Rodgers overdue?

Throughout his previous three jobs, Rodgers has achieved an exceptional amount of success. He won the Championship play-offs with Swansea City and managed to keep them in the top flight throughout his time there, and was the only manager in history to achieve promotion to the Premier League with them.

The Welshman would leave Swansea and then lead Liverpool as close to a title as they had been in 25 years in 2013/14, and was exceptionally unfortunate to not snatch the trophy, with that famous Gerrard slip moment looked at as the definitive moment in the season, as City won by two points. However, when Rodgers left, he achieved something that no other Premier League manager did at Liverpool beforehand, and that was installing hope of a title at Anfield.

Soon after, Rodgers would be sacked by Liverpool after the club fell off the next season. The ex-Chelsea coach would then take over at Celtic and win back-to-back trebles with the club; this is the only time this has happened in British football history.

So, surely, with this potential title charge with Leicester, surely we now have to consider him a modern Premier League great and a man who is truly underrated.

Leicester City Odds

skybet

HARVEY BARNES TO SCORE 15+ LEAGUE GOALS @ 14/1

His Shrewd business is getting the 'Rodgers' treatment

Some of the transfers that Rodgers has brought to the club have been incredibly shrewd, with their young full-back James Justin being a prime example of that this season, joining from Luton Town for around £6m. Rodgers has also been behind the signings of Youri Tielemans (not the loan deal), Ayoze Perez, Dennis Praet and Wesley Fofana, all of which have had an impact, especially Tielemans, who has become one of the best midfielders in the Premier League. Leicester now boast one of the deepest and most balanced squads in the league, which was evident through a continued run of good form despite several first team players out injured.

“You don’t play for Brendan Rodgers if you don’t do the dirty work,” said the in-form James Maddison after putting on another masterclass for his side against Chelsea, which is something that has been evident throughout his tenure at the club. In truth, Leicester very rarely get outworked by any team they face, with Jamie Vardy defending from the front and that translating throughout the whole team and his fantastic work rate is unrivalled by almost any central striker in the league.

A midfield of Maddison, Tielemans and Wilfried Ndidi is arguably one of the most well-rounded trios in the league, with Maddison in particular hitting fantastic form in recent weeks, scoring six goals in his last eight games.

2015/16 not a too distant memory right now

The likelihood is that Leicester will not win the league this season, despite their brilliant first half to the campaign. But, the fact that they are even in the picture – currently four points ahead of Liverpool – is testament to the belief and desire that Rodgers has instilled in his side, similar to what he did for the Reds seven years ago. Right now, they are playing like a team that is fueled off the confidence built from Rodgers himself and they look like they believe they belong with the big teams and are gradually breaking up the idea of the ‘Big Six’.

They look almost nailed on for the top four currently, ahead of the likes of Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Arsenal, which is an achievement in itself, whilst they are potentially in a title race with the two Manchester clubs and the champions. And, in truth, mathematically, there can be no disputing that.

Rodgers must be considered one of the best coaches in the league for the transformation project he has built at Leicester and the bigger clubs will be impressed by their progress so far and we do have to start to talk about Rodgers as a genuine great in the Premier League these days.

By Luke Feather


🔵 £40 IN FREE BETS WHEN YOU PLACE A £10 BET ON THE WORLD CUP 🔵
NEW CUSTOMERS ONLY. FIRST SINGLE & E/W BET ONLY. £10 MINIMUM STAKE. ODDS OF 1/1 OR GREATER. 4 X £10 BET TOKEN. FREE BET STAKES NOT INCLUDED IN RETURNS. FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL ONLY. FREE BETS ARE NON WITHDRAWABLE. NO FREE BET EXPIRY. ELIGIBILITY RESTRICTIONS AND FURTHER T&CS APPLY. 18+. BEGAMBLEAWARE.ORG.
Claim Now
⚫️ BET £30 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET A £30 FREE BET FOR FOOTBALL PLUS 20 FREE SPINS! ⚫️
New customers only aged 21+. Minimum deposit £10. Qualifying bet must be placed at odds of evens (2.0) or greater. Get a matched Free bet up to £30 plus 20 Free Spins on Fishin’ Frenzy The Big Catch, credited within 24 hours. Free Bet and Spins expire in 7 days. Additional T&Cs apply. Please bet responsibly.
Claim Now
⚽️ BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £40 IN FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL! (MOBILE ONLY) ⚽️
Sign-up via Mobile using promo code N40 and place a bet of £10/€10 or more and we will give you 4x £10/€10 free bets. By entering the Promo code in the box above you agree to the full terms and conditions of this promotion as displayed below. See full terms below.
Claim Now
🟢 GET £35 IN FREE BETS + A £10 FOOTBALL BET BUILDER WHEN YOU BET £10 ON ON THE WORLD CUP 🟢
Place a single £10 bet on any Football market, at min. odds 1/2 (1.5) - Get £35 in Free bets on bet settlement, valid 30 days + an extra £10 Free Football Bet Builder will be available to claim from the promotions hub. Only deposits via Cards will qualify. T&Cs apply. 18+.
Claim Now
🔵 BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET A £10 FREE BET FOR FOOTBALL! 🔵
18+ / BEGAMBLEAWARE / NEW UK CUSTOMERS ONLY / £10+ DEPOSIT & BET TO QUALIFY / FREE BET VALID FOR 7 DAYS / NO E-WALLETS / PREPAID CARDS / T&CS APPLY
Claim Now
🟠 GET £30 IN FREE BETS WHEN YOU PLACE A £10 FOOTBALL BET ON THE WORLD CUP + PLUS AN EXTRA £10 BET BUILDER 🟠
Place a single Sportsbook £10 bet on any Football market, at min. odds 1/2 (1.5) - Get £30 in Free bets on bet settlement, valid 30 days + an extra £10 Free Football Bet Builder will be available to claim from the promotions hub. Only deposits via Cards will qualify. T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
🟢 BET £20 ON FOOTBALL & GET £20 IN FREE BETS FOR THE WORLD CUP! 🟢
18+ New UK Customers. Must bet £20 in total on 4+ legs, min odds 3.0. £20 credited as free bets, stake not returned. T&C Apply. BeGambleAware.org.
Claim Now
🟠 BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £20 IN FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL! 🟠
*New members. £10 min deposit & bet on sportsbook, placed & settled at 1.5 min odds within 14 days of sign-up. Win part of E/W bets. 2 non-withdrawable £10 Free Bet Tokens: accept in 7 days, valid for 7 days from crediting (ex. E/Ws & Multiples), stakes not returned. Click here for Rules & Exclusions. Bet Responsibly. BeGambleAware.org
CLAIM HERE
🟢 BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £50 IN FREE BETS! 🟡
For new customers. Min deposit requirement. Free Bets are paid as Bet Credits and are available for use upon settlement of qualifying bets. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
⚫️ £30 MATCHED FREE BET IF YOUR FIRST ACCA LOSES + 50 BONUS SPINS ⚫️
*New UK customers only. Min Deposit: £5. Maximum Free Bet: £30. First bet on a Football or Horse Racing multiple with 3+ selections. Overall odds: 3.00 (2/1) or higher. Free Bets available upon settlement of the qualifying bet. This is offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. 50 Bonus Spins credited on placement of qualifying Acca bet.50x bonus wagering applies as do weighting requirements, bonus Spins only available on selected games and expires 7 days after being awarded. Debit card deposits only (exclusions apply). 18+. BeGambleAware.org. Bet The Responsible Way. Full terms apply. 18+.
Claim Now
🟩 BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £30 IN FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL 🟩
New UK, IE & Malta customers only. 18+. Min £10/€10 first deposit using Debit Card or Trustly. Place a bet of £10 at min odds of 1.5. Free bets expire in 90 days. Full T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
🟠 100% BONUS UP TO £200 ON YOUR FIRST DEPOSIT 🟠
£10 min deposit using promo code 200BONUS • The bonus will be applied once the full deposit amount has been wagered at least twice with cumulative odds of 1.50 or greater • To withdraw any winnings from your bonus, you must wager the bonus amount at least 5 times • All deposit and bonus wagering requirements must be completed within 60 days • This offer may not be combined with any other offer • Wagering limit of £50 per bet Applies • Restrictions apply to withdrawals, payment methods and countries & full T&Cs apply. 18+.
Claim Now
🟣 BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £60 FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL! 🟣
New UK customers only. Register using the promo code BETFRED60, deposit and place first bet of £10+ on Sports (cumulative Evens+). First bet must be on Sports. £20 in Free Bets to be used on Sports, £10 in Free Bets to be used on Lotto and 50 Free Spins (20p per spin) credited within 48 hours of bet settlement. Further £20 in Free Bets credited 5 days after settlement. Bonuses have a 7-day expiry. Payment restrictions apply. SMS verification and/or Proof of I.D and address may be required. Full T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
🔹 GET £30 IN BONUSES FOR FOOTBALL WHEN YOU BET £5 ON THE WORLD CUP! 🔹
18+ New customers only. Opt in, bet £5 at odds 2.00+ within 7 days of registering, no cashout. Get 2x £10 Free Bets, set events at odds 2.00+. Plus a £10 Slot Bonus, selected games, wager 20x to withdraw max £250. 7 day bonus expiry. Card payments only. T&Cs apply, see below. begambleaware.org | Please gamble responsibly
Claim Now
🟢 UP TO £40 MONEY BACK AS BONUSES FOR FOOTBALL + A £10 CASINO BONUS 🟢
18+ begambleaware.org. New customers only. Min deposit £10. Money back as bonus if first sports bet loses. Wagering requirements: sportsbook 3x at min. odds of 1.40 (2/5), casino 50x. Unless forfeited the sportsbook bonus must be wagered before using the casino bonus. Bonus expires 7 days after opt-in. Visit Unibet.co.uk for full T&C's. #Ad
Claim Now
🎩 BET £5 ON ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £30 IN BONUSES! 🎩
18+ New customers only. Opt in and bet £5 on any football market at odds 2.00+ in 7 days. No cash out. Get 3x £10 football free bets for set events. Free bets expire in 7 days. Card payments only. T&Cs Apply. Begambleaware.org | Please gamble responsibly
Claim Now
🔵 BET £10 ON THE WORLD CUP & GET £20 IN FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL + ACCA REWARDS OF YOUR CHOICE! 🔵
New UK customers (Excluding NI) only. Mobile exclusive. Min stake £10. Min odds Evs. Free bet applied on 1st settlement of any qualifying bet. 30 days to qualify. Free bets expire in 7 days. Cashed out/Free Bets won’t apply. Payment method restrictions. 1 Free Bet offer per customer, household & IP Address only. 18+. T&C's Apply **18+. Choose either Boost or Insurance. Available for in-play/pre-match bets on selected sports. You cannot use specials, boosts, any free bet or any other promotion. A minimum of 5 selections and minimum odds of 1/5 per selection/leg to receive Acca Rewards. Minimum stake of £/€0.05. Max free bet refund of £/€20 per Acca for Insurance. Maximum bonus payout is €/£1,000 per Acca for boost. Free bets, cashed out or voided bets will not qualify for this promotion. T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
♥️ GET £40 FREE PLAY PLUS A £10 FREE SPORTS BET FOR FOOTBALL! ♥️
1st time depositors only. Min. deposit £10. Use code FAPOKER. Free Play given as cash, Spin & Go tickets, and a Sports Free Bet over 6 days. Tickets expire after 24 hours. Withdrawal restricted during bonus period. Terms apply.
Claim Now
🔵 GET £20 IN FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL WHEN YOU BET £5 ON THE WORLD CUP! 🔵
18+ New UK & ROI Customers only. Min deposit £5. Min first £5 bet at minimum odds 1/2 to qualify for 1x 20 free bet. Certain deposit methods and bet types excl. Free bet valid for 7 days, stake not returned. Restrictions + T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
🔴 GET £20 IN FREE BETS FOR FOOTBALL WHEN YOU BET £5 ON THE WORLD CUP! 🔴
18+ New UK+IRE Customers only. Certain deposit methods & bet types excl. Min first £/€5 bet within 14 days of account reg at min odds 1/2 to get 4x £/€5 free bets. Free bets valid for 7 days, stake not returned. Restrictions + T&Cs apply.
Claim Now
👋 50% UP TO £50 WELCOME BONUS 👋
18+ begambleaware.org; New bettors get 50% of deposit up to £50; Once per household; Min deposit £15 (no Skrill/Neteller); Wager a total of 8 times deposit + bonus, with max qualifying bet stake equal to your initial bonus amount; Bonus expires after 60 days; Min odds of 4/5 on singles, or 2/5 per leg for acca; Some bet types excluded; See full terms; See full terms; Terms apply; 18+
Claim Now
🔷 GET £30 IN FREE BETS WHEN YOU BET £10 ON FOOTBALL 🔷
Full T&C’s Apply. New customers on mobile only. 7 days to claim and stake £10 minimum bet at odds of 1.5 or greater to qualify. Free, void, cashed out or partially cashed out bets do not qualify. Max 3x £10 free bets credited on bet settlement. Free bets must be used on 4 or more selections with selection odds of 1.3 or greater. Free bets are non-withdrawable and stake not returned with winnings. 7 day expiry. 18+ BeGambleAware.org.
Claim Now