Adrian Mariappa says he will understand if Brendan Rodgers is given a frosty reception on his return to Vicarage Road.

The new Leicester manager will take charge of his first Foxes' game on Sunday against the Hornets, who were the first team to give him a senior managerial position.

However, Rodgers did not leave on the best terms when he left Watford and joined Reading after declaring that reports linking him to the Royals were untrue.

Mariappa said that he could understand if the Hornets' fans were not too welcoming to their former manager. 

"You can always understand it from the fans’ point of view," he said.

"I expect there’ll be a good atmosphere on Sunday again, but as players it’s business as usual. It’s another game, it’s a great opportunity for us, obviously we’re at home and we’ll be trying to get three points.

"With Reading, it’s a decision he made for himself and for his own career. Everyone’s going to have their own opinions about it and everyone’s entitled to their own opinion about it, it’s football, it’s just one of those things and you have to concentrate on yourself and your own club."

Mariappa has fond memories of playing under Rodgers with Watford and said that he enjoyed playing the style of football the former Celtic and Liverpool boss wanted his team to produce.

However, the defender also said that current coach Javi Gracia has a philosphy that he and everyone at Watford is buying into.

He said: "He [Rodgers] had a different way of playing football. From day one he tried to put his philosophy down. I enjoyed wanting to play that way, his sessions were all geared up to play out from the back and he’s gone on at other clubs and you’ve seen how well he’s done with his philosophy and obviously he’s stuck by it.

"Our gaffer now has been terrific since he’s come in, you can see the job that he’s done. He came in at a time that was difficult and steadied the ship. We had a lot of injuries at the time, but he came in pre-season and implemented his own ideas onto the team and all the team have bought into him as a manager and I can’t speak highly enough of him."

One thing Mariappa specifically likes about Gracia is his positive attitude. Following Watford's 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Liverpool, the head coach publicly declared that he had confidence in his team and the defender said that the club can quickly regroup from the defeat and will be ready for the next game.

He said: "Without him even having to say that, he shows that to the players day in day out with his actions.

"Everyone believes in his philosophy and what he’s creating here and what we have together.

"You can have bad days at the office and last Friday we had a good game. It’s important not to get too high when you win and too low when you lose. Just go back to basics of what’s got us to this point in the season and to maintain that.

"As a defender you don’t want to concede goals, especially five goals, home or away, no matter who you’re playing.

"But there’s 38 games in a season, it’s not down to one loss or one defeat. Obviously it’s disappointing to lose the game but you can’t get too disheartened. The games are coming thick and fast and if we prepare right come the end of the season we’ll be where we deserve."