When it comes to success in football, the players are often given endless accolades for their performances and perhaps rightfully so.
However, when results just aren’t going their way, the manager is often to blame with calls for their job to end. In this article, we will be praising one of the top managers of the month and what they achieved in October as well as looking back at their managerial highlights.
So up first for this new feature is Leicester City manager, Brendan Rodgers. It’s not often that the manager of the month would begin with a loss but here we are. Leicester faced off against table-toppers Liverpool (who remain unbeaten). After a somewhat dubious penalty decision in the 95th minute, Leicester were unlucky to not come away with at least a point. However, after the international break, the Foxes were back to winning ways, turning over Burnley 2-1.
Their next October fixture was nothing but Premier League history. An astounding 9-0 win over Southampton equalled the largest ever win in Premier League history. This result was last achieved in the top flight by Manchester United way back in 1995 when they beat Ipswich Town.
What is more impressive about the Leicester romping is the fact that they were away from home. Such an impressive scoreline and fantasy football managers were in uproar (if they had Leicester players that is).
The end of October saw Leicester in an amazing third place, just two points behind current champions Manchester City in second. The Foxes also brushed aside Burton to book their place in the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup whilst beginning November in emphatic fashion as they picked up three points away at Selhurst Park. Could history repeat itself and see Leicester lift the Premier League trophy come May? Only time will tell.
For now, let us have a look at the man in charge. Rodgers first captured the eye of football fans nationwide when he took Swansea City to the Premier League, the first Welsh side to ever achieve such a feat. Not only did Swansea stay in the Premier League the following season, but they also finished a very impressive 11th, far beyond the clutches of the dreaded relegation zone.
These managerial accomplishments made Liverpool perk up and decide to bring Brendan on board for the 2012/13 season, to bring back some glory to Anfield after a somewhat disappointing run of late. After finishing seventh in his first year, Rodgers had a point to prove.
Liverpool had a fantastic Premier League campaign in the 2013/14 season which barring the infamous Gerrard slip and an amazing Crystal Palace comeback, could have seen them lift the trophy. The following year was somewhat less exciting and even saw Rodgers become the first Liverpool manager since the 1950s to not win a trophy in their first three seasons at the club. A forgettable stat I’m sure you will agree.
Despite backing at the start of the 2015/16 season, Brendan Rodgers departed Anfield later on in the season and joined Celtic for the following season. Whilst his European ventures with Celtic were less favourable (infamously losing to Gibraltar’s Lincoln Red Imps and being thrashed by Barcelona 7-0, their worst defeat in European competition), Rodgers won many trophies including two league titles in a row, before departing for current club Leicester City.
In his first season, Leicester ended the campaign in ninth place. Whilst currently on track to smash last season’s standings by some margin, there are murmurs of Leicester winning the title and although Brendan and Leicester are by no means strangers to title-winning seasons, it will be a very difficult task. However, Champions League football returning to the King Power seems like a real possibility and that is certainly the aim in the East Midlands.