Alistair Johnston had a baptism of fire at the beginning of his Celtic career. Thrown into his debut for the New Year Glasgow Derby at Ibrox, Johnston acquitted himself well in an intimidating atmosphere that most players would crumble in.
From that first game, Johnston showed the battling qualities that convinced Ange Postecoglou to bring him to Celtic and during the Trophy Day celebrations, the Canadian international paid tribute to the manager.
Johnston said [BBC Sportsound], “It’s been such a whirlwind since I’ve got here. Just match after match being thrown right in and I’ve loved every minute of it.
“And I’m looking forward to being able to tell this to my children, my grandchildren in the future. Because it’s one of those ones you’ve almost got to pinch yourself to really believe that it’s true.”
When asked about what he felt about Ange Postecoglou, Johnston said, “He’s made such a difference in my career.
“He’s the one that wanted to bring me in. He’s the one that took a chance on someone from the MLS where a lot of other managers wouldn’t. So I have a tonne of gratitude to him.
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“He’s believed in me from day one, and he’s given me this opportunity to take my game to another level and for that, I’m forever grateful.”
Johnston has really bought into Celtic since his arrival in January. The right-back was brought in as a replacement for Josip Juranovic and has not put a foot wrong since his arrival.
The Canadian international has made 19 appearances for Celtic and, incredibly, the team have not lost whenever he has started a match.
After the Scottish Cup Final, Johnston will get a well-earned rest over the summer after a gruelling season that has seen him appear in the World Cup Finals in Qatar. And I, for one, am looking forward to seeing him kick on next season as we look forward to the Champions League.
In other news, Liel Abada hits brilliant Celtic milestone on Trophy Day