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Rodgers family affair

9 December 2013

Anton keen to set up Anfield clash

Nobody is more determined for Latics to win their FA Cup with Budweiser, second-round replay at Mansfield Town than Anton Rodgers.

The midfield man would relish playing at Anfield against a Liverpool side managed by his father Brendan.

Anton, who still lives with his parents on Merseyside, thought team-mates were joking when they texted him with the draw.

He said: "I was in Reading visiting my little boy so didn't see the draw live.

"Danny Philliskirk and Connor Brown texted me and I thought it was banter. It was only when I turned on the television that I saw it was true and I started laughing."

Anton added he then tried to telephone his father and mother, but was unable to establish contact with either of them.

He continued: "It was only when I got home late last night that I spoke to dad about the draw and there was banter.

"He had texted me earlier in the day wishing me luck with the draw.

"We had spoken beforehand believing deep down that, as we had played Liverpool twice in a row, that it could not happen again."

Anton admitted the family rivalry would provide added interest were Latics to play at Anfield asĀ it would be a case of each being a spy in the opposite camp.

He said: "Dad comes to a lot of our games so we know each others' teams really well.

"He has been impressed with our group and sees great spirit in the team.

"He likes the way we play good football, something he advocates his team to do.

"The reason I signed for Latics was because I liked the manager's philosophy as to how he wanted to play."

Anton stressed that Latics must first beat Mansfield before they can dream of playing at Anfield where his only previous visits have been as a spectator.

He continued: "A lot of the experienced players here have been at pains to tell us we are not there yet, but what a great incentive to beat Mansfield.

"There is still a lot of hard work to be done before then starting with tomorrow's match against Chesterfield in the Northern Area Semi-Final of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy."

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