"I think it will be crazy"; Celtic hero anticipating Champions League fever

By Lewis Laird

May 18, 2022

Ange Postecoglou and his Celtic squad produced an incredible turnaround this season, delivering the Scottish Premiership trophy.

That wasn’t their only reward for winning the league title, though, with Champions League football also set to return to Celtic Park next campaign.

It has been over four seasons since that famous music blasted out at Parkhead, and it is an exciting time to be a Celtic supporter.

Photo by Pierre Albouy – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

Not only is it an exciting time for the Celtic fans but also for the players who appear to already be relishing the prospect of playing in the Champions League next season.

In recent weeks, we have heard Ange Postecoglou and players such as Carl Starfelt talk up that opportunity heading into the 2022/23 campaign.

The latest to do so was Hoops striker Giorgos Giakoumakis, who has had a brief spell in the competition with former side AEK Athens.

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Despite the season only just finishing last weekend, the 27-year old is thinking ahead to the ‘special’ chance to play under the lights at Parkhead in front of the supporters.

He said [Scottish Daily Express]: “It’s the top competition a player can participate in. Everyone wants to compete at that level.

“I love it. I managed to play a couple of games in the Champions League with AEK Athens, and it was a special experience.

“When you hear that anthem, you lose your mind. It’s amazing.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

“The atmosphere in Athens when we played Ajax was incredible. The AEK fans are insane, and the atmosphere they create is incredible.

“But I can’t even imagine what Celtic Park will be like with these fans. I think it will be crazy.

“The experiences we have had this season cannot be compared with anywhere. It’s not even close.

“Playing in the Champions League is something you dream of from being a child. I played it already for a great team like Athens, but here it is going to be special.”

Champions League fever is spreading through the Celtic dressing room.

When players arrive at Celtic, one of the first things that is mentioned about the club is the unique atmosphere.

There aren’t many more special nights at Celtic Park than Champions League nights.

Playing in that competition didn’t feel like a possibility at an earlier stage of last season. However, Postecoglou and his players worked incredibly hard to get to where they are now.

So, they are rightfully relishing that opportunity.

It also bodes well for the club heading into pre-season preparations for next season, whether that be transfers or players being up for it right from the off in training.

Playing in one of the world’s biggest competitions might see Ange Postecoglou take this group of players to a whole new level.

In other news, Video: Nir Bitton’s final emotional goodbye to Celtic support.