Neil Lennon left his role as Celtic boss back in February 2021 and the club have been on the hunt for a new manager ever since. Reports had been focused on former Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe for some time, though as time passed with no confirmation, it was eventually revealed he would not be taken up the role.
Who Is The New Celtic Boss?
Australian Ange Postecoglou has today been named as the man to manage Celtic who last season fell way behind an invincible Rangers in the Scottish Premier League. The former Australian national team manager also has experience managing in the A League with Brisbane Roar and Melbourne Victory and has joined Celtic after three seasons as manager of Yokohama F. Marinos in Japan.
Born in Greece, his family moved to Australia when he was five and Postecoglou went on to play for South Melbourne from 1984-93. In 1996 he managed the side for four years before taking a role with the Australian national youth set up.
Postecoglou comes into Celtic on a 12-month rolling contract with plenty of work needed to turn around a disappointing last campaign. In being named manager, Postecoglou said
“I always drive to win things like anyone else, but I have a clear idea of how I want my football team to play and that’s to make sure supporters don’t sit down for 90 minutes. That’s an important part but it’s also a formula that’s worked for me to have success”.
His experience has shown he knows what it takes to win, having won two A-League titles with Brisbane Roar and led Yokohama F. Marinos to their first league title in 15 years in 2019.
During his time in the J-League he built a side that relied heavily on building their attacks from the back with heavy involvement from the centre backs, as well as often utilising a single pivot defensive midfielder. His side would be happy slowing the game and inviting teams out to press them before changing tempo quickly and working the ball forward. It is important for his sides to use intelligent movement to create space to receive the ball as well as space for teammates, which will be important to get across to his new side quickly and clearly during the pre-season.
Along with a new manager, there will also be a big turnover of players for Celtic, with recent reports of Odsonne Edouard being linked with a move to Leicester City, as well as Kristoffer Ajer making it clear his future is destined to be away from Glasgow.
It will be interesting to see how this style of play will fit in the Scottish Premier League, as well as when they enter the UEFA Champions League in the second qualifying round. With potential transfer targets aware of his rolling contract, there could be some concerns to players about the stability of the club, though Postecoglou will look to ensure this is not a concern with results on the pitch.
“I definitely want to entertain the faithful at Celtic Park, and make sure they’re excited about the way the team plays, but the ultimate goal is to make sure the team are successful”.
Celtic only have to look at neighbours Rangers for the stability and forward planning they have shown with Steven Gerard and the success it has brought so far. For the green and white supporters, they need to see a clear identity and philosophy from the club and be able to see a clear plan going forward. This is not just about keeping up with the Rangers next season, it is about regaining stability and dominance at home and competing well in Europe.
Postecoglou, though not a familiar name to many, has a proven record of performing well in his role as well as developing players and clubs. With a good start, he should be looking to confirm a long term contract and a long term plan, without it, and Celtic bosses may have been continuing to look at backup plans with the pressure of another season behind Rangers too much to bear.
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