Can Rodgers take Leicester City to a top 6 place next season?

When Brendan Rodgers decided to leave the comfort of winning the Scottish Premiership with Celtic to return to the English Premiership, Leicester was possibly not a preferred destination.

Having been so close to ending Liverpool’s hunt for a Premier League title back in 2014, Rodgers has since re-built his career north of the border and whilst there isn’t the intensity of competition, he has added titles and cups to his CV.

Of course, the Foxes are not strangers to success, their unexpected league title coming just three years ago but since then life has been a little rocky. It was inevitable that after winning the league the Premier League was going to become a lot tougher for Leicester and quite rightly they didn’t flog the family silver at the expense of trouble and debt further down the line.

What they didn’t expect was to struggle so quickly the following season, ultimately costing boss Claudio Ranieri his job less than a year after winning the league. Craig Shakespeare was to steady the ship but not deemed able to control the dressing room. Claude Puel struggled to win over the players, his style not fitting in for the likes of Jamie Vardy.

Vardy has since proved valuable to Rodgers leading the scoring charts with eighteen goals to his name although at 32 years of age, Rodgers will need to look to replace those goals in the coming years.

Only Manchester City, Watford and Newcastle have beaten the Foxes since Rodgers arrived to take charge at the beginning of March and although they faced a majority of the teams below them the points still needed to be won.

Baring defeat on the final day of the season and wins for sides directly below them, the Foxes will finish the season in the top ten and a good springboard for an assault on a place in Europe next season.

Whether Rodgers returns to Scotland or the continent for additions to his squad is currently unclear, his core of players already at the King Power Stadium including the likes of Harry Maguire, James Maddison, Ben Chilwell and Demarai Gray amongst others coupled with title winners Kasper Schmeichel, Marc Albrighton and Vardy providing the experience gives them a good chance of progressing next season if Rodgers finds some bargains to complement them.

There’s no reason why Leicester can’t be involved in chasing down the top 6, but it would take monumental financial backing to break into the race for Champions League places.

But what they do possess in Rodgers is a man driven to compete with the best, however competition you would expect will be strong once again from Wolves and Watford next season whilst Everton are also finishing this campaign in good form.

The Leicester faithful expect, but can Rodgers and the board deliver?

Written by Trevor Knell

Follow Trevor on Twitter @trevk37

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