Rodgers: Mourinho Was A Fantastic Influence On Me
The interview subject seems to crop up every now and then, and that is the relationship and influence that former Chelsea boss Jose Mournho had on Swansea City manager Brendan Rodgers.
You wonder now if our boss gets fed up of the same questions regarding his time at Chelsea when Mourinho was manager there, as he's very much his own man - who has plenty of his own ideas - rather than relying mostly on copying those from a more experienced football manager.
Brendan Rodgers certainly conducts himself in a much better way than his former Portuguese colleague, always polite and respectful before, during and after matches, which couldn't be said for Mourinho.
Rodgers was Youth Team Manager and Reserves Team Manager respectively at Chelsea, when Mourinho was there at Stamford Bridge, and while he's bound to have been a massive influence on Rodgers, the Irishman still wanted to make it clear that he's received inspiration, guidance and knowledge from different locations and people around the world - particularly in Europe.
Barcelona, massive rivals to Real Madrid - Mourinho's current club, has been mentioned by Rodgers as the team that he wants to build his on - the passing style of football and how pleasing they are to the eye. With that said, Swansea were labelled 'Swanselona' last season as they continue to make the most passes in a game - even in the Premier League - which highlights their ability to still maintain possession for long periods in the top English division.
Rodgers talked about Mourinho and said:
"Jose was a fantastic influence for me,"
"When you get the chance to work with such managers it gives you a chance to learn from the best and develop. The more experience you have the better, and I have been very fortunate to be able to work with lots of very good managers, world-class managers.
"When you move into management, you're working alone - you can't look to imitate or be anyone else, and you have to carry your own ideas with you. I have then hopefully been intelligent enough to take on board the good and the bad, and work it into my own identity."
Rodgers also said that it wasn't just at Chelsea where he learned about football management:
"I do stay in touch with him. But it wasn't just at Chelsea that I came round to that way of thinking.
"From 20 years of age I studied in Spain and travelled throughout Europe, to understand the structure and the formation of 4-3-3. Going to Chelsea allowed me to explore and experiment with how far you can take that system with really good players.
"I like my teams to be attractive and creative, but also with good tactical discipline, and that is really the core of all our work each and every day.
"In terms of coaching I like my players to be technically strong and understand the game tactically, but I also think it's vital to maximise the extent to which every player can play the game, and it's also very important to understand the human needs element of players."
Rodgers also added that his team have made an 'excellent start' in the Premiership:
"We have had an excellent start, sat in mid-table in 10th position after seven games, and that's having played Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea.
It's given us confidence that we can go and compete, which is very important."
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