"I didn't know"; Celtic boss on Josip Juranovic Panenka ahead of Aberdeen clash

By David Walton

November 28, 2021

Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou has revealed that he didn’t know Josip Juranovic was planning a Panenka in Germany, and stated he has a decision to make on whether he keeps him on spot-kicks.

Juranovic wowed the Hoops supporters on Thursday night with an incredible dink that deceived Bayer Leverkusen goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky. Jota would then fire Celtic 2-1 ahead before a late collapse saw us leave Germany with nothing.

Croatian international Juranovic has successfully netted 3 out of 3 from the spot this season. It comes after Callum McGregor and Giorgos Giakoumakis both missed from 12 yards when Josip wasn’t on the pitch in recent weeks.

Photo by Alex Gottschalk/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

But Postecoglou doesn’t come across as overly-enthused about the penalty in his short reaction to the stunning moment. And he admits he’ll be making a decision on whether to amend the penalty-taker for the visit of Aberdeen today.

As quoted by the Scottish Sun, Postecoglou said: “No, I didn’t know he was going to do that. I will have to make a decision on whether he keeps them before Sunday.”

Juranovic’s 3 penalties taken for Celtic are the only ones to his name throughout his senior career [Transfermarkt].

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No need to take Josip Juranovic off Celtic penalty duties

It’s important not to read too much into such a short comment from Postecoglou. However, there’s not really a decision needing to be make when it comes to the penalty-taker. Not when you consider the quality of Juranovic’s 3 so far this term.

Indeed, the Croatian has managed to net all 3 whilst mixing up his technique. His first against Real Betis was fired into the bottom right-corner. He moved it to the opposite corner for his Premiership pen against St Johnstone, before his audacious Panenka on Thursday night.

What’s honestly wrong with all of this though? He’s managing to ensure his penalty kicks aren’t predictable. There’s nothing that differs a Panenka from a penalty that’s fired into the top corner when it comes to taking it seriously.

Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images

The caveat of taking a Panenka has always been that it comes across too lackadaisical and care-free. But that feels harsh when you see the confidence and composure with which Juranovic struck his.

It becomes a problem if he keeps doing it and becomes predictable. However, there’s no indication this is something he’s going to change to permanently. In fact, the chances are if we get one today he’ll hammer it into one of the corners.

There’s no point in making a big deal out of it. It was expertly taken and, most importantly, it found the back of the net. So long as that keeps happening, there’s no need to change penalty takers.

In other news, Provan slams SPFL’s Celtic Hampden decision; urges immediate change