When Celtic appointed Ange Postecoglou as manager, there were more doubts than excitement about the move. And perhaps understandably so. While he had enjoyed a lot of success and praise during his time in Australia and Japan, he was a bit of an unknown when it came to European football. Half-a-season forward and it appears to have been an inspired move on the part of the Hoops.
Last season, Celtic had finished 25 points behind the Rangers in the Premiership and as a result, not many fans would have expected them to turn it around within the space of a season. Most probably would have been content with a second place finish and a cup title.
At the start of February, Celtic find themselves at the top of the Premiership though, after getting a magnificent 3-0 win over the Rangers at Parkhead, thanks to Reo Hatate’s brilliant brace and Liel Abada’s third. While the target has to be finishing first at the end of the season, it is a confidence boost nonetheless and the title race looks to be well and truly on.
“I am really proud of the group. I thought the first half was outstanding, not just the goals we scored but the way we played.
“Their keeper pulled off some great saves and it was everything we wanted to be as a football team.
“Particularly with the context of the game and the opposition because they are a good side.
“They have been on top all year and only lost one game. It’s the same team that won the championship last year. So our performance in the first 45 was outstanding.
“We knew the occasion and magnitude of the game and the consequences. In the second half we had to defend, which I thought we did well again.
“We limited them to shots from outside the box. I am really proud of the players. It was a big occasion, we know that, and I thought they played at a great level.”
Postecoglou makes brilliant claim after Celtic’s win vs Rangers
Celtic completely blew the Rangers away with an incredible performance in the first half and could have easily gone into the break five or six goals up on another day.
In the second half, they were not nearly as good and appeared to be a bit cautious. It looked like they were more interested with getting the win than more goals.
Even that is a great sign for Celtic though, who have not been great in recent times when it comes to holding on to leads. Thus, after three goals and a clean sheet from a Glasgow Derby, there is not much to complain about. What a team and what a manager!
This article was originally posted here