Ange Postecoglou confirms Rocco Vata and Bosun Lawal Celtic status as another big chance beckons

By John McGinley

December 3, 2022

Ange Postecoglou has confirmed Rocco Vata and Bosun Lawal will travel with the Celtic squad for this week’s training camp in Portugal as the duo edge closer to competitive involvement at the Bhoys.

Both players, as well as Scott Robertson, travelled with the senior side for the Sydney Super Cup and have been involved in Lennoxtown sessions since this week’s return.

Now they’re set to get another big opportunity to impress this week and Postecoglou has called on them to seize their chance.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Speaking in a media conference yesterday, the Celtic boss said [Celtic YouTube]: “They’ve been in and around the first-team pretty much this year. I think the more exposure we give them, I think every time we see them, they’re edging a little bit closer which is the important thing.

“They’re taking the experience they have with us. Stephen McManus and Darren O’Dea are doing a great job for the B team, preparing these guys for the next step.

“It’s up to the boys themselves. Every time they get an opportunity they show they continue to develop, we saw that with both of those guys. We’ll take them both to Portugal as well. That’ll give them some more exposure to first-team football.”

Vata, in particular, has caught the eye of many Celtic supporters after vibrant showings in pre-season and during the Sydney trip. He has a direct, attacking style that is easy to get behind. If he can continue to improve, he could get a big competitive chance in the coming months.

Lawal will have it more difficult given less rotation in the defensive areas but is clearly also rated by the club and coaching staff.

Homegrown youth development isn’t something we’ve seen too much of under Postecoglou, but there have been reasons for that. With the squad now more settled and Celtic again asserting their dominance domestically, it may become easier to give minutes to youngsters such as this.

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