Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers talks about how James Maddison has improved under him and the changes in the midfielder’s game that has made him one of the most versatile players in his team. One area that Rodgers has focused on in coaching Maddison is his defensive game, and he has done so successfully, with the 23-year-old ranking third for tackles among the City squad this season.
Brendan Rodgers said “When I came in he was one of the players I was looking forward to working with, just to see him close up, He’s a wonderful personality, some may deem it arrogant, but it’s not, he has a football arrogance because when he’s on the pitch he knows he can cause teams problems. But what we try to give him in the game is this positional game, don’t be just known as a 10, he’s played as an eight, on the left side of a midfield three, be in good positions and also the other side of the game. Fundamentally, to attack well you have to be able to defend well. He has to understand how to press the game and where to press it. These were the same types of information I’d have given to Philippe Coutinho. Philippe would say that he felt he learned when he came to Liverpool, working with myself, how to defend better and to press the game better. All the talent, he has that. It’s understanding how to synchronise that with the team. That’s what James has. He’s a wonderful technician. He’s a world-class specialist on dead balls, with incredible free-kicks and corners and everything like that. He’s a threat on goal, with his assisting and shooting. But he has more to come in his game, the more experience he gains at the highest level.”
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