Martin O'Neill has been to watch Ange's Celtic; explains why he didn't meet him

By David Walton

April 28, 2022

Former Celtic manager Martin O’Neill has stated that he’s been to watch Ange Postecoglou’s Hoops in action in recent weeks as he explained why he politely declined the chance to meet him.

Postecoglou’s Hoops have been a breath of fresh air into Scottish football this season. Celtic look on course for a sensational title-win, with fans taken aback with the football on show from the manager’s team this season.

O’Neill, meanwhile, has confirmed that he’s also been to see Ange’s team in action. He was in attendance for the Hoops’ 4-0 win at Motherwell back in February, and Martin was asked whether he wanted to meet Ange on the day.

Photo By Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images

However, he’s explained that he declined the opportunity as he simply didn’t want to distract him on a matchday.

Speaking to PLZ Soccer, Martin said: “I went to see them play a few weeks ago when they beat Motherwell very easily at Motherwell in an afternoon game.

“Iain Jamieson, a good friend Iain, was wanting for us to meet. I would love to have done so and haven’t had a chance to do it. We’ll do it perhaps at the end of the season. But it was one of those things where the manager – he’s concentrating. He’s concentrating on the game. That’s the most important thing.

“It’s matchday, he’s going to be concentrating on the game. You don’t want any interruptions from some unscheduled meeting that you’re going to make regardless of who it is. So I just said ‘Iain, honestly, we’ll leave it today. Another day will come’.”

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Martin O’Neill impressed with Ange Postecoglou’s Celtic work

No surprise to see that Martin has been left hugely impressed with Ange’s work at Parkhead. How could you not be given everything he’s done since he’s come in.

He may have been nominated for the PFA Scotland Manager of the Year award. But even winning that won’t feel as if it’s enough recognition for everything he’s achieved here. It’s so easy to forget just how low an ebb Celtic were at. The club felt as if it was in freefall and even Postecoglou’s appointment did nothing at the time to gather excitement.

The manager has had to overcome ignorance, arrogance, and dismissiveness whilst also trying to rebuild this football club. Rangers, meanwhile, have largely the same squad as last season and have been swatted aside by Ange’s men.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

O’Neill surely sees some comparisons in Ange when he reflects on his own Parkhead revolution back in 2000. Oh how you’d love to be a fly in the wall when it comes to that meeting.

When it does happen, it looks as though Ange will be stepping into it as both a league championship and double-winner. That’s utterly mind-blowing when you think back to last summer. That level of achievement was supposed to be at least 12 more months away.

Granted, for now, there’s still a job to be done. The manager won’t be thinking about what happens at the end of the campaign. At the moment, it’s all about beating Rangers and taking a huge step closer.

In other news, Tom Rogic’s brilliant Celtic fitness admission ahead of Glasgow derby