Brighton boss Graham Potter has expressed his admiration for Brendan Rodgers and Leicester, who he has no doubt will be “ready” for their clash with the Seagulls at the Amex Stadium on Sunday.
Leicester’s two full seasons so far with Rodgers as manager have seen them achieve successive fifth-placed finishes in the Premier League, reach the Europa League’s last 32 and win the FA Cup.
Sunday’s contest comes three days on from them opening their Europa League campaign for 2021-22 by drawing 2-2 at home with Napoli, a match they were leading 2-0.
Speaking about Rodgers at his pre-match press conference, Potter said: “I think he’s done a fantastic job – he does an amazing job wherever he goes.
“His CV is fantastic, at every football club he improves the team and the players, and I think that’s all you can ask for.
“The next step is of course a major one because they’re trying to break into that top four, which is huge. But I think the way the club is run, the job Brendan does, the way the players work, they’re a fantastic club.
“They’ve made some good signings. They’ve already got a really good understanding of what they’re trying to do. A mixture of Premier League winners, international players of a high level, great Premier League experience, but some young players as well – they’ve got a nice balance, a nice mix.”
Potter was asked about the difference he and Rodgers – who made five changes to his starting line-up on Thursday – had had in preparation time ahead of Sunday’s match.
And he said: “I think on the one hand it’s good because you’ve got a bit more rest in between matches. (But) sometimes a game is good because you’ve got players who can play, you can get some momentum and energy from the matches, so it can work in both ways.
“I think Brendan and his staff are so good and experienced at dealing with that. They had a good game (on Thursday) but they will be ready for us, I’m 100 per cent sure about that.”
Brighton’s last outing was the 1-0 win at Brentford last weekend that continued their fine start to the Premier League season, making it three victories in four games.
Potter said: “I think we’ve just come back with a good mentality, the understanding of what we are trying to do has grown and grown. You need a bit of luck and to play well, and we’ve done that in parts, but we can still improve, so that’s what we’re focusing on.
“We haven’t cracked it, we’ve got a lot to do, but it’s a good foundation, a good start for us.
“We’re in a good place, but we know it’s just the start. We just need to carry on.”
As well as beating Burnley 2-1, Watford 2-0 and then Brentford, Brighton have also lost 2-0 at home to Everton this term.
Leicester have six points from their four games so far, having defeated Wolves and Norwich and lost to West Ham and Manchester City.
“It’s going to be a tough game for us, but it’s one we’re looking forward to, at home,” Potter said.
“We want to play better than we did against Everton. As we learned from that game, if you don’t play well it gives you little chance of winning in the Premier League, so we have to play better than we did then.”
Brighton are yet to taste victory against Leicester in eight Premier League meetings and have lost six of those encounters.