Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou given brilliant Wim Jansen comparison

By David Walton

March 28, 2022

Former Celtic favourite Paul Lambert has opened up on the similarities between Ange Postecoglou and the late Wim Jansen.

Postecoglou has overseen something of a revolution at Celtic Park this season. From a disastrous season plagued with infighting and a squad that was set to be dismantled, Ange looked to have a thankless task. In addition to that, it looked almost certain that Rangers were in pole position for an era of dominance after Steven Gerrard’s title win last year.

Instead, he’s managed to turn things around completely and have Celtic in pole position for not only the league championship, but a potential treble.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

And Lambert believes there are comparisons to be made over the late Wim Jansen’s arrival back in 1997. As quoted by the Daily Record, Paul said: “I’m not surprised at how quickly Ange has turned things around at Celtic. I know when they lost a couple of games at the start of the season there were eyebrows raised and it was very reminiscent of when Wim Jansen arrived as manager.

“Wim lost his first game at Hibs and people were saying that it wasn’t going to be good, but he proved them all wrong. Look at that era and that team which went on to win the league in the 1997-98 season against a really strong Rangers side, arguably the strongest Rangers team I came across during that time.

“I look at Ange and I see something similar as he’s been brilliant for Celtic, he’s been great with the media and he’s connected with the fans. He’s kept a handle on all of these things and the crowd are following him which is a major factor and he also has the players right behind him.”

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Ange Postecoglou and Wim Jansen – comparisons are there to be made

You can see exactly where Lambert is coming from here. People were quick to write off Ange just as they were Wim. Both needed time and patience however to implement their style and see the job through.

Granted, it’s important to remember that Postecoglou hasn’t won the league championship yet. We should be wary of getting too emotional at this stage of the season. Nothing has been decided and the season could very easily see us fall flat on our face if we’re not careful.

Wim’s Celtic team was able to show real character when the pressure was at its peak. The entire campaign that year was filled with anxiety and nerves given it was imperative we stopped Rangers’ 10-in-a-row pursuit. Ange will be hoping his side can replicate that level of character in the coming weeks. Even if we were allowed many more slipups back in 97/98.

9 May 1998: Celtic Coach Wim Jansen and Murdo McLeod celebrate after a Scottish Premier League match against St Johnstone at Celtic Park in Glasgow, Scotland. Celtic won the match 2-0 to become the league champions. Mandatory Credit: Shaun Botterill/Allsport

With regards to Wim, it’s just a shame we didn’t see him at Celtic Park for longer. That’s not a subject we’ll go into for now, but that’s one difference Ange will surely have his eye on when it comes to the Dutchman – longevity at Parkhead.

It would’ve been wholly exciting to see Wim take his Celtic side into the Champions League qualifiers and see how it evolved further. Especially when you consider what happened a year later as we lost the championship again.

That doesn’t look like being the reality under Ange thankfully. If he wins the league title this year, it looks set to be the beginning of something special.

In other news, Stephen Welsh expertly shuts down question on Celtic rivals; shows leadership qualities