"We want to upset him"; Jim Goodwin is coming out with some big talk ahead of Celtic vs Aberdeen
Jim Goodwin is hoping to harness the excitement of the opening weekend and travel to Celtic Park with ‘no fear’ this afternoon as Aberdeen embark on their first full season under the former St Mirren boss.
Goodwin is a chatty Scottish Premiership manager. Most observers will have noted that since he took the dugout in Paisley. That hasn’t changed since his move to Aberdeen and he’s said plenty already about today’s visit to Glasgow, including some candid patter about his tactical approach.
To be clear, I don’t think this is a bad thing. I like managers who speak their mind, back their team and show a bit of ambition. And Goodwin is certainly coming out with some big talk ahead of the league opener.
Despite admitting ‘admiration’ for Ange Postecoglou to The Times, he also told them: “There will be no love lost on Sunday. We want to upset him [Postecoglou], we want to do what Hearts did to Celtic in the early part of last season and hopefully catch them on the hop a wee bit.”
Meanwhile, he also insisted nobody in his squad is scared of Celtic or the potential atmosphere at the stadium today.
Goodwin said to The Press & Journal: “The new signings have all settled in very, very well and they’ve got no fear of Celtic. We’ve got players who haven’t played at Parkhead before who have never experienced that atmosphere. And these boys are really excited about it.
“It doesn’t bother me whether we play Celtic in the first game or the 10th game. You’ve got to play everybody at some point. We’re not going to be fearful at all.
“Eight weeks from now they’re probably at full fitness and have some new signings. But of course going there when there is a party like atmosphere, it’s up to us to try and keep their supporters quiet. And to do that we have to be on it.”
To all of this, I say, fair play Jim. It’s a good thing that our opponents are approaching games with this attitude. It leads to better matches, more entertainment and provides the opportunity for Celtic to show what we’re all about too.
Ultimately it’s up to Celtic to show some of these new players why Celtic Park should be a venue to be feared. It’s on Postecoglou’s players to keep the crowd fired up and energised.
This group have shown they relish that challenge.
It will certainly be interesting to contrast Goodwin’s pre-match comments with his post-match ones. If he’s sounding a little less confident then it’ll only be because Celtic have done their jobs.
It’s not personal, but hopefully the Aberdeen boss isn’t sounding as buoyant come the full-time whistle.