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Early Meeting Was Key To Brendan Rodgers Winning Over Scott Brown

Early Meeting Was Key To Brendan Rodgers Winning Over Scott Brown
Balls Team
By Balls Team
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When Brendan Rodgers became Celtic manager in the summer of 2016, one of the first things he did was to arrange a meeting with club captain Scott Brown. The midfielder had been Celtic skipper for six years at that stage.

Rodgers had the meeting as he wanted to discuss not just tactical changes but also behavioural ones.

"Funny enough, before I joined Celtic, someone had rang me and was telling me about the job," the now Leicester manager told Graham Hunter's 'The Big Interview' podcast.

"One of the first things he said was, 'If you want to play how you're going to play there Brendan, you're going to have to move on Scott Brown'.

"Scott and I hit it off from the first time I met. When I knew I was taking the job, I invited him down to my house in London and we had a chat, a really good chat; I explained the ideas.

"I was also telling him about behaviour. Before I went in, Celtic had lost in the semi-final of the cup. They lost on penalties but they got dominated in the game by Rangers. There was a real fear and sense that Rangers were back up to the top level.

"Obviously, leading into that game, Scott was sat on a street, having had a night out. The point I was making straight away to him was, 'You can't do that'. If you want to be the best player that you possibly can be and you want to lead a club of Celtic's status, then you're one of the pillars of this club."

brendan rodgers scott brown meeting celtic

14 July 2017; Scott Brown and manager Brendan Rodgers share a joke ahead of the UEFA Champions League Second Qualifying Round First Leg match between Linfield and Celtic at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile

Brown went on to be a key player for Rodgers as the club won back-to-back trebles.

"From that meeting on, he was incredible for me," Rodgers said.


"This is a guy who I wanted to help tactically because I'd seen him as a young player - he used to run all over the place because he could run! What I was trying to get him to do was think and run.

"That was going to be a tactical shift in how he would play. He had the personality. He also wanted to improve.

"He was an incredible captain for me. I couldn't speak highly enough of him. He played the game like he was trying to show people that this was the first time you're seeing me play, every single game.


"He's a much better player than he's given credit for. There's no doubt that if he wanted to, he could have played at the top end of the Premier League because of his personality and his ability.

"You need the pupil to want to learn. I went into Celtic and they had won titles but my idea was to see if they could win in a better way."

Photo by David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile


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