Rodgers was out of work after leaving Reading in December 2009 and he was invited to have a look around City with a view to a possible coaching role.
However, after being impressed by the set-up at the Etihad Stadium, the Northern Irishman was subsequently offered the job of Swansea manager.
He led the Swans into the Premier League before leaving for Liverpool earlier this summer and he will face City boss Roberto Mancini at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.
"The approach from City came after I left Reading," said Rodgers. "I was out of the game for six months and desperate to get back.
"My focus at that time was just getting back to working again. It could have been Manchester City, anywhere.
"I was prepared to go and coach kids. Then I got a call about the possibility of going to City. I went up at the end of the 2009-10 season and took a few days looking around before meeting Roberto Mancini in Milan.
"I didn't really think that I was going to get a manager's job so the next best thing was at least working with top players. And if that opportunity was going to come up with City then brilliant.
"But all of a sudden, I got the chance to be No.1 at Swansea.
"In that little period at City, though, I saw the real inside plan of the club and they're trying to do it the right way.
"Yes, they're spending a bucketload of money but they're trying to create and build something."