"Maximum tranquility"; Celtic man's plan against Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League
Jota has outlined his Celtic team’s plan against Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League, and apparently it involves “maximum tranquility”.
Whether his phrasing is about inner peace, having confidence with the game plan, or lulling Bayer Leverkusen into a defeat with flourishes of luxury, we’re not sure. However, Jota has a clear objective; repeating the first-half showing against Betis to scare the Bundesliga outfit.
It doesn’t sound entirely tranquil but we’re into it.
Jota, who has been an extremely popular Celtic signing, really came to the fore against Real Betis. While he’d had an impressive debut against St Johnstone, his end product made a difference against the Andalusians. That is, before Betis ended up scoring four.
Celtic are a much better defensive outfit now than how they were in that first Europa League game, though. And Jota believes the Bhoys can combine their best traits to get a result in Germany.
He said [Herald]:
“We are going to approach the game with the maximum tranquility, knowing what we need to do.
“[We’re] going to see what are the strengths of Leverkusen and the lower points and keep on doing our thing, sticking to our process and our ideas and do our football.
“To score goals you need to attack so we are not going there to defend. We need to attack. It’s a difficult game because they are very good, with very good attacking players, so we will need to defend.
“Can we take heart from the first game when we scored three goals away against Betis? Yes, we will fight for the result, we will work for the result. That is what we are looking to do.”
Jota and Celtic have a plan against Bayer Leverkusen; can Bhoys reverse last Europa League meeting?
Obviously, Thursday’s opposition are very good. Anyone that watched the last game between Celtic and Bayer Leverkusen will recognise that. Yet, for a 4-0 doing, the scoreline still flattered them that night.
As odd as it sounds, Celtic still played some good stuff. Had the Hoops taken their chances, a high-scoring draw wouldn’t have been entirely unfair. So, Celtic going right at Bayer Leverkusen seems a good idea.
And, with the manager we have, it’s the only option anyway. That isn’t to say, though, that the defence hasn’t massively improved. Attacking and defending as a unit has been a process with growing pains, but we’re seeing the results now.
From front to back, the responsibilities are the same. On the ball, dominate. Off it, win it back quickly and counter. Everyone, including Jota, has bought into that methodology at Celtic.
Whether it’ll be “maximum tranquility” for the supporters, or the heavy metal football we’re becoming used to under Ange, is another thing altogether. But if the players are feeling tranquil, zen even, going into this game, then surely it’s a boost.
Final point here; English isn’t even Jota’s first language. Yet, he speaks with such abstraction about football. A bit like a lyricist. Like, I don’t know, George Michael?