Steven Gerrard hails Celtic boss as ‘fantastic man manager’

Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has hailed Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers as a ‘fantastic man manager’ prior to the Hoops’ Champions League playoff tie against Astana tonight.

The former Reds midfielder was previewing the game on BT Sport where he spoke about the influence Rodgers had in his career.

“He’s top drawer. He’s very slick on the training ground, he’s a fantastic man manager, he makes you feel good and confident all the time. He helped me an awful lot. People might not think that but he helped break my game down and change my game so you’ve got to give him a lot of credit.” he said while speaking to Gary Lineker.

Rodgers celebrated a domestic treble with Celtic last season, but their Champions League outing was still a disappointment as they finished last in their group. Celtic have beaten the likes of Linfield and Rosenborg to reach the playoff stage of the competition this season, and fellow BT Sport pundit Steve McManaman also heaped praise on Rodgers for his efforts.McManaman said:”What you have to remember is they did it the hard way Celtic. Yes, they played Linfield early on and dispatched them quite comfortably, but to go and beat Rosenborg when they are top of their league and well into their league, that’s always a difficult game Rosenborg.”

Celtic have not been able to produce a standout performance in the Champions League ever since their 2-1 triumph over Barcelona in the 2012-13 season and Rodgers will be hopeful of beating Astana across two legs to show his side’s progress over the past year.The Scottish champions have made a bright start to the league campaign with two victories from their opening two games, and they look on course to secure their seventh successive title this term with no real competition behind them – apart from Rangers, who are in a transition phase.