Leicester talks began before Unai Emery was sacked by Arsenal, says Rodgers
By James Dale
Last Updated: 06 / 12 / 19 2: 33 PM
Brendan Rodgers has signed a new five-and- a-half-year contract at Leicester City, ending speculation over a move to Arsenal.
The former Liverpool and Celtic manager was on Arsenal’s shortlist after sacking Unai Emery last week despite insisting he was “very happy” at Leicester, who sit second in the Premier League.
Rodgers’ previous contract was due to expire in 2022, but his suggestion that deal contained a release clause had fuelled talk of a move away from the King Power Stadium.
He says talks over a new Leicester deal had been ongoing for weeks before Emery left Arsenal.
“When I made the decision to come to Leicester City , it was because I was excited about the direction the club was taking and how I could apply my experience to the journey, “said Rodgers, who took over in February this year.
“I came here with a purpose to add something to that and to help the club build for the future.”
Rodgers, 46, had also been considered as a potential target to replace Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham, before Jose Mourinho was appointed .
Leicester City chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha said Rodgers’ qualities were “well known”.
“But just as important to us is the suitability of Brendan’s wider philosophy to the club’s established culture and values,” he said.
“He and his staff immersed themselves immediately, building an understanding for the Club and the city and an appre ciation for what makes them special. “
Rodgers keen to build on Vichai’s ‘incredible legacy’
A run of seven Premier League wins in a row have taken Leicester to within just eight points of leaders Liverpool, and 13 clear of fifth-placed Wolves in the hunt for a Champions League place.
Rodgers says the club want to build on the “incredible legacy” of Leicester’s 2016 title-winning side under owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died in a helicopter crash last year .
“I understand exactly where we want to go which is to be fighting at the very top of this division,” he said in his pre-match press conference ahead of facing Aston Villa on Sunday, live onSky Sports Premier League.
“We’re a wealthy club with fantastic owners, but we don’t have the finances of a top-six club.
“Can we do it in another w ay? Through developing players and improving them. I hope in my time here we continue to break records and if we can win some trophies great.
“But ideally we want to be in a really healthy position at the top end of the table. “
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