The 2011 comparisons between Rodgers and Postecoglou that will excite Celtic fans

By Euan Davidson

July 3, 2021

For Celtic supporters, reading Brendan Rodgers/Postecoglou comparisons might be the last thing you’d want to do.

While some time has passed, and we can view the Leicester boss’ betrayal in hindsight, there are still some scars there. For example, there are supporters who blame Rodgers’ late recruitment for some of the failures of 20-21. An over-reliance on Rodgers, it could be argued, has put restructuring the club to the forefront of many minds.

But the fact is he happened to be a very successful football manager for Celtic. And it wasn’t just the trophies, either; the style of football made the Bhoys incredible viewing for a few years. The hopes are, with new boss Ange Postecoglou, that the party atmosphere will return to Paradise.

We didn’t know much about him before. Yet, through training videos, tactical analysis and watching his former teams, there’s some real optimism about Postecoglou. While the environment is different, the hope is that Ange can emulate one of his predecessors in the Hoops dugout. And, funnily enough, the comparisons between the two coaches have been made for a decade.

In Australian outlet The Roar, columnist Tony Tannous compared Postecoglou’s Brisbane Roar side to Rodgers’ Swansea. It’s almost eerie how foreshadowing Tannous was in his 2011 piece. He wrote [The Roar]:

“…from a purist’s perspective, it would be hard to begrudge The Swans an opportunity to showcase their swagger on a broader stage.

“In simple terms, the style is very reminiscent to what we saw from Ange Postecoglou’s men last season, not at all in keeping with what we’ve come to see and expect from the often robust English Championship.

“Swansea stands out for its subtlety. Precision over power.”

Brendan Rodgers achieved verticality at Swansea / (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Foreshadowing? Or wishful thinking for Celtic supporters over Brendan Rodgers/Ange Postecoglou comparison?

The article continues [The Roar]:

“The philosophy is simple; to get the ball down and play. Right from the keeper, Dutchman Doris de Vries, they often look to go short and play out.

“When he has the ball, the fullbacks push on, the central defenders split and Allen drops off to pick up the ball and start things.

“Sound familiar? Swap Allen for Eric Paartalu, Michael Theoklitos for de Vries, and you have the A-League champions.

“Like at Brisbane, Swansea’s beauty is not so much about the personnel but the philosophy and system.”

Then, perhaps most pertinently:

“If Rodgers’ team can take the final step at Wembley, his modus operandi will be on display to a far wider audience, and it will be fascinating to see if he can take his template and make it successful at a higher level.”

Ange Postecoglou: a Roar-ing success / (Photo by Matt Roberts/Getty Images)

It’s still way too early to make a judgement call, but the evidence is there

We’re saying this now, in 2021, before Ange Postecoglou has led Celtic through a match.

So, let’s not get carried away. However, it’s very, very interesting that these comparisons were made way back in the past. Brendan Rodgers went on to manage Liverpool, nearly securing a Premier League title, before taking Celtic to an Invincible Treble, winning everything on offer domestically.

If Postecoglou can achieve 75%, or even half of what Rodgers did, while making us competitive in Europe, then you’d imagine most supporters would be pretty happy.

On the training pitch, the similarities are already present. Gathering the players in a huddle, taking the lead and being on the pitch as moves develop. The difference is perhaps in personality; Rodgers is more esoteric and well, a bit strange. Postecoglou has that typical Australian bluntness, and direct manner. But you can bet one has probably learned off the other, given both managers’ voracious footballing appetites.

It’s just interesting. That’s all we’re saying. Here’s hoping the similarities continue in terms of trophies, wins and culture.

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