Ange Postecoglou is slowly but surely bringing leaders back to Celtic again

By David Walton

August 5, 2021

We all know Celtic needed plenty of players this summer, but Ange Postecoglou appears to be refilling our pool of leaders at the same time.

One of the biggest criticisms of Celtic last season was their lack of leadership qualities throughout the club. Outside of Scott Brown and Callum McGregor, there wasn’t enough experienced pros leading from the front.

That showed in our performance levels too. Celtic were fragile, easy to score against, and toothless going forward. There wasn’t enough know-how or personality in the team. Not enough commanding figures standing up for the squad and making their presence known.

But Postecoglou, to his credit, has seemingly been working hard to change all of that.

Firstly, he brought in Carl Starfelt. Whilst the centre-back only has a handful of European qualifiers to his name, he was labelled a “natural born leader” by Brighton first-team coach Bjorn Hamberg [Daily Record].

He also arrived at Celtic with some international experience also. An apparently vocal figure, Starfelt gives Celtic some extra power and authority at the back.

Ange Postecoglou is bringing some leadership back to Celtic

“I think Joe Hart will be a success at Celtic” | Sim from We Are Tottenham TV

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“I think Joe Hart will be a success at Celtic” | Sim from We Are Tottenham TV
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You then have the signing of Joe Hart. This one doesn’t really need explaining. 340 EPL appearances. 75 England outings including one as captain. Five winner’s medals with Man City [Transfermarkt].

Not to mention he was labelled the best English goalkeeper by Jose Mourinho last season [Sky Sports]. Spurs fans have also been talking up his influence in the dressing room and his status as a perfect professional since his move to Parkhead.

We’ve long since needed a personality like this as our number one. Hart looks like being that man.

James McCarthy, meanwhile, brings authority in experience alone. He looks being the natural replacement to Scott Brown that we’ve been looking for.

Again, he’s backed heavily in international and EPL experience, spending 12 years down in England’s top flight. Whilst perhaps not known for being an out-and-out leader, McCarthy finally brings some much-needed class and expertise to the midfield. A player with street smarts and one who has seen and done it all throughout his career.

Now he’s with his boyhood club, and it’ll be down to him to pass his knowledge over to his new teammates.

It moves away from Celtic’s transfer policy of buying young projects and developing them for a profit. Postecoglou has moved to bring in two players who have been around the block and can add so much to the dressing room. Throw in Starfelt’s leadership capabilities and we’re finally starting to look like a more mature squad.

The transfer work doesn’t stop here of course. We need full-backs and everyone knows that to be a case. Probably a new striker too.

But finally we’ve added some leadership into a group that was starved of it.

In other news, Jack Ross provides latest update on reported Celtic target Josh Doig