Brendan Rodgers expressed on Tuesday that he had returned to Celtic as a coach sooner than he anticipated and he also promised to maintain the offensive style of play implemented by his predecessor, Ange Postecoglou.
Rodgers has commenced his second tenure as the head of the Glasgow club, taking over from Postecoglou, who departed for Tottenham Hotspur after guiding Celtic to a domestic treble in the previous season.
Rodgers achieved victory in all seven attainable championships during his initial tenure at Parkhead, spanning from 2016 to 2019, before departing to join Leicester. Following his dismissal from Leicester in April, the Northern Irishman has returned to the Hoops, expressing his gratitude for the opportunity.
“I had hoped that one day again I would have the opportunity – it’s maybe come a little bit quicker than I had thought,” Rodgers said in Japan, where Celtic will play Yokohama F-Marinos on Wednesday in the first game of their pre-season tour.
“I’m very proud and privileged to be back here again and I’m very ambitious to have a successful period.”
Celtic has emerged victorious in 11 out of the previous 12 Scottish Premiership championships and has secured a total of 17 domestic trophies in the last seven seasons. During his two-year tenure, Postecoglou managed to secure five of those trophies.
However, the temptation of the Premier League was too strong for him to resist, as he now faces the task of rejuvenating Spurs following a tumultuous year.
Rodgers mentioned that he would make some adjustments to Celtic’s tactics but emphasized that both he and Postecoglou share similar principles.
“Defensively it’s very aggressive, it’s very synchronised, very coordinated, it’s full of emotion and aggression,” he said.
“Then when you have the ball, the challenge is to create goals and score goals.”
Postecoglou previously managed Yokohama in the J-League before becoming the coach of Celtic. He recruited a number of players from Japan to join the team, including Kyogo Furuhashi who was recognized as Scotland’s player of the year in the previous season for his 27 goals. Other Japanese players such as Reo Hatate, Daizen Maeda, Yuki Kobayashi, and Tomoki Iwata are also part of the club.
Rodgers praised the performance of his Japanese players, stating that they are doing an exceptional job.
“I think the humility, the hard work, the quality, also what has improved over the years and years is the tactical idea of the game,” he said.
“You can look around the world and Japanese players are really progressing so well.”
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