Ange Postecoglou labels tomorrow a "big opportunity" for Celtic man Albian Ajeti
Tomorrow night against Real Betis is a “big opportunity” for Albian Ajeti to stake his claim, according to Ange Postecoglou.
The Celtic manager only has one option to choose from with his threadbare squad severely lacking in attacking candidates. Kyogo Furuhashi is still out injured whilst new signing Giorgos Giakoumakis is looking to get up to speed fitness-wise.
It was the same for the Ross County game on Saturday. Ajeti, however, managed to use that occasion to bag a brace and put himself back in the good books of supporters.
It’s a unique chance that’s fallen on the lap of the Swiss forward. But Postecoglou has stated that it’s fully deserved given what he’s been showing in training.
Speaking via Celtic TV, Postecoglou said: “It’s an opportunity for Albi and he’s testament that if you work hard at training, you’ve got to be patient and wait for your opportunity to come. But if your opportunity comes, you take it. He did that and improved as the game went on.
“When you haven’t played for quite a while on a consistent basis, it’s hard to get a rhythm.
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“I said after the game that he really persevered in that area and got his rewards at the end. Like all goal scorers when they’re scoring goals, he’ll be feeling good and looking forward to tomorrow.”
Ange Postecoglou ready to give Albian Ajeti chance of a Celtic reprieve
Let’s be honest with ourselves here. Would Ajeti be anywhere near the team had Furuhashi been fit? Or if Giakoumakis was available to play as soon as he’d signed? Most likely no.
But that’s football. Injuries are the basis for fresh opportunity. That’s what’s been given to Ajeti now. If he can shine away to Real Betis, what a feather that would prove to be in his cap.
It’s difficult to know what a solid performance from Ajeti tomorrow does for him truly. It’s not as if there’s any way he’s going to convince supporters that he’s a better option than Furuhashi. Considering Postecoglou only plays one up top for the most part, you wonder what the end game is for Albian if he continues to shine.
He’s a striker that isn’t going to wow you with his build-up play. He isn’t someone who, if he doesn’t score, you’ll think had a great game. He’s all about goals, and that will be his sole focus in Betis tomorrow night.
At the very least, he needs to be targeting improvement in his reputation amongst the Celtic supporters. During the summer window, nobody would’ve mourned had Ajeti been one of those to leave the club. That’s where his stock is currently at unfortunately, and it’s down to him to change that.
All Postecoglou can do is give him the chance. He took that opportunity against County, now it’s time to see if he can use it to kickstart a much-needed goal-rush.