Ange Postecoglou makes Celtic player readiness admission

By John McGinley

July 19, 2021

Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou has admitted his squad still aren’t at the fitness levels required for the season, but still thinks they can produce a good performance against FC Midtjylland.

Postecoglou has been working his squad through intense training sessions at Lennoxtown and in Wales.

The new manager, who has shown nothing but honesty to supporters since walking in the door on day one, was again forthright on the situation at Celtic today.

On the subject of player readiness for the tests ahead, he couldn’t have been clearer.

As quoted by BT, Postecoglou said: “We have had guys coming in at different times. Whether that was because they had different end dates, others had to quarantine, others were on international duty.

The latest as Celtic eye up further transfer moves

“They are sort of all at different levels. But what I do know is that we worked them really hard the last week to try to get them all up to a certain level.

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“I don’t think any of them are at the fitness they need to be at for what’s ahead. But I am confident that all of them are in a good enough condition to put in a good performance tomorrow night.”

More strong honesty from Ange Postecoglou about Celtic

It’s fantastic that the manager is setting the standards high here. To be clear, he’s not criticising the players as such, or their work ethic. He’s just noting where they need to be.

Postecoglou plays a system that requires constant work rate and pressing from every position. Even his goalkeepers put in the hard yards.

There’s a chance all of these players at Lennoxtown will be in a condition beyond anything they’ve experienced before by the time Postecoglou is done with them.

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

You could pitch these comments as concerning. In truth though, for me, it’s just the manager making it clear what is required.

As he says, he’s not expecting it to be a barrier to a good performance against Midtjylland. It’s not an excuse. Just reality.

In other news, Ange Postecoglou’s full answer on Leigh Griffiths and Celtic situation.