Belfast Telegraph

Guardiola can cope with title pressure, says Leicester boss Rodgers

Rodgers challenged Manchester City for the title while at Liverpool in 2014.

Brendan Rodgers believes Pep Guardiola enjoys the title pressure (Martin Rickett/PA)
Brendan Rodgers believes Pep Guardiola enjoys the title pressure (Martin Rickett/PA)

Leicester boss Brendan Rogers believes Pep Guardiola thrives on the pressure of the title race.

Manchester City chief Guardiola is chasing back-to-back Premier League crowns, with their battle with Liverpool going down to the wire.

City host Leicester on Monday, having gone into the weekend as leaders but now trailing two points behind the Reds, who beat Newcastle 3-2 on Saturday night.

Rodgers finished second with Liverpool, two points behind Manchester City, in 2014 and he knows Guardiola will be relishing the tension.

He said: “When you’re at that level it’s a positive pressure. Everyone sees pressure as negative but what you do is you work it so it’s a positive.

“You know when you’re at Man City or when I was at Liverpool or Celtic, there are players when they play against you they go at it that extra 10-15 per cent, so every game is a cup final feeling.

“That’s what you want and that’s what it’s like every game. Which is absolutely fantastic and that’s what you want. That’s when you put your work in during the week.

“What you learn with experience is you learn to regulate the pressure. You have to have the filter in there that regulates it so that it doesn’t swamp you, because it could do.

“But when you have a passion for your work and you love it as well, you’re better off inside knowing how you feel than outside feeling comfortable.

“You’d rather be in there, trying to be better and trying to improve knowing that at times there is absolutely no question that you are going to fail, and you accept that.”

Leicester head to the Etihad after a convincing 3-0 win over Arsenal last Sunday and Rodgers has backed the Foxes to cause City problems.

He said: “We’ve got real speed in the team. You’ve got to be super compact as a team and tight. They’re littered with world class players and world class players will always find the space.

“You’ve got to try and nullify the space and then you know that when you break through that pressure there’s going to be space, and that’s something this team are very, very good at.”

PA

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