Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers has praised the work of his former colleague Mark Warburton at Rangers as they prepare to go head to head in next season’s Scottish Premiership, writes Stephen Halliday.
When Rodgers was manager of Watford from November 2008 to June 2009, he forged a close relationship with Warburton who was the academy director at the Vicarage Road club at the time.
The pair have kept in touch ever since and last week Rangers manager Warburton said Rodgers would be a “great asset” to Celtic if they succeeded in appointing him as Ronny Deila’s successor.
Rodgers has returned the compliment after being formally unveiled as manager of the Scottish champions this week.
“Mark is a good guy,” said Rodgers. “I was only at Watford a short time as a manager. I came in and I was given my opportunity there and Mark was the youth academy director.
“He was very loyal, very supportive, an excellent coach and he had a good rapport with the players and I am delighted to see how well he has done. He did a really good job at Brentford and I spoke to him at the end of that season when he left.
“He has taken up the challenge at Rangers and I sent him a message when he came up here, because even he wouldn’t know how big it is.
“It was just a private message and I haven’t spoken to him yet since I joined Celtic.
“I am sure in his time here he has realised the size of the clubs up here and the pressures that are totally different from down south.
“He has done a good job.”