Celtic captain Callum McGregor explains the brilliant tendency of new recruits

By Euan Davidson

November 20, 2021

Celtic captain Callum McGregor has revealed something extremely heartening about the new crop of Bhoys players.

McGregor welcomed 12 new team-mates this summer, as well as a new manager in Ange Postecoglou. And while Postecoglou has been public about embracing the history and icons of Celtic Football Club, less is said of the players who arrived in the summer.

Probably, because they don’t want to talk before having done the prerequisite research, or asked the right questions. But, McGregor explains, the new Bhoys are keen to know their history.

Photo by Jan Kruger – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

That’s particularly important this week. Having just lost a club legend in Bertie Auld, a Lisbon Lion and incredible storyteller, keeping the history of the club alive is more important than ever. McGregor explained previously that it was Auld who spurred him on to become a regular at Celtic Park.

Speaking ahead of today’s Premier Sports Cup clash against St Johnstone, McGregor said [Herald]:

“They see the faces around the place, the pictures, and some of the new guys ask, ‘Who’s this?’ and ‘Who’s that?’ and you fill them in.

“Celtic’s just so built-on tradition and built-on history and anybody who comes to the club can see that and how much the history means to people that are in the building.

“The new players take a massive interest in it.”

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Players should be proud of coming to Celtic; Callum McGregor reveal is heartening

One thing we shouldn’t do – and I suspect nobody actually does – is expect players from across the world to be able to recite the 1967 team. Or, to know about Jimmy McGrory, Danny McGrain, or even more recent legends like Martin O’Neill, to any great extent.

What we should expect, though, is for players to take an interest. Honestly, it’s no surprise that they do. Footballers are often written off as mercenaries, guys who pick up a wage and don’t care too much about where they are.

Honestly, it seems a little unfair. Especially for a club like Celtic, where the history of the club is surely a huge selling point for players and agents. No doubt, there are plenty in the squad who take a keen interest in the players who have come before, and what they achieved.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

How sad it is, then, that we’ve lost a man like Bertie Auld, the embodiment of the Celtic story. Someone who could bring the club’s illustrious history to life through his anecdotes and songs.

The responsibility, then, is for players at the club now to continue the winning traditions. To equal and even try to top those that came before.

That they’re taking an interest is fantastic. It’s the way it should be. And McGregor has done the new players well here, even though they were already becoming firm favourites.

Read more: Chris Sutton spots Bhoys opportunity; relishing Celtic and van Bronckhorst head-to-head