Ange Postecoglou reflects on how Celtic unbeaten run compares to his Australian heroics

By Euan Davidson

March 19, 2022

Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou is more than used to lengthy runs without losing; just ask anyone who saw him manage Brisbane Roar in the Australian top-flight.

Postecoglou, who’d go on to manage Australia and Yokohama F Marinos – both to considerable success – turned the world of Australian “soccer” on its head back in 2011. Not only did he set a new footballing record in Australia, but one in Aussie sport more generally.

Yep – with 36 games unbeaten as Brisbane Roar manager, Postecoglou and his team beat a 74-year record held in an entirely different sport. Rugby League side Eastern Suburbs (no, neither do we) and their 35-game record was left in the dust by “Roarcelona” in 2011 [Sydney Morning Herald].

Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

The landscape at Celtic, of course, is very different. Brendan Rodgers’ 69-game unbeaten run remains an imperious, intimidating record for any Hoops boss. However, in a rare moment of reflection, Ange Postecoglou enjoyed the fact he was close to repeating his own history, in a totally new environment.

Postecoglou said [Herald]: “That was decent.

“That was a challenge as well because you have the salary cap down there, which is meant to equalise the competition. That’s why teams don’t go on long unbeaten runs, as you can’t outspend the opposition.

“That was a great run and if I reflect on it, it was a similar scenario where we didn’t look too far ahead.

“We embraced each challenge that came our way and we had success that followed.”

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Australian managerial legend Ange Postecoglou has his sights on making history with Celtic

Imagine saying making history with a football club is “decent”.

“Decent” is a word normally reserved for winning £2 from a slot machine. You could amply describe a good lunch meal deal from a supermarket as “decent”. Unless you’re Joe Hart, obviously. Then it’s a word used solely to describe winning the FA Cup [Sun].

It’s classic Ange Postecoglou. What’s important, though, is the encouraging bit he said after. Comparing the two runs seems like chalk and cheese, but there’s an important point about mentality there.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Managers, players, even you on Football Manager probably, all talk about taking it one game at a time. It’s become a cliché, and it’s impossible to do anything else. That is, if you take it literally. Figuratively, it’s more about understanding the individual challenges of each contest.

That’s what Celtic have done. Though Ange Postecoglou is very much an ideologically-driven coach, he’s been excellent at identifying weaknesses in other teams. Picking personnel for specific tasks has also been a trait we’ve seen. It sounds like basic manager stuff, but it’s hard to do.

If he wants to beat Brendan’s record, there’s another 40 games to go, starting today against Ross County.

Read more: The area where Celtic will need to be laser-focused against Ross County today