Postecoglou identifies key traits for Celtic captaincy, will consult senior players

By Euan Davidson

July 10, 2021

Ange Postecoglou is taking his time over the Celtic captaincy.

The new Bhoys boss has been quick to praise the efforts of former skipper Scott Brown, and has identified what he wants from the next Celtic captain. Postecoglou also plans to talk to senior players about the role, as part of making a decision about who will replace Broony as the wearer of the armband.

Callum McGregor is widely seen as the favourite to take up the mantle. The vice captain prior to Broony’s departure, McGregor has had his leadership skills heralded by some important Bhoys names. Paul Lambert compared McGregor to Paul McStay. Former Celt and current coach Mark Fotheringham has also lent his support to CalMac, describing him as “elite”, while Postecoglou himself has described the midfielder as “outstanding”.

Postecoglou isn’t going to rush into a decision, however. Albian Ajeti was handed the armband against Sheffield Wednesday in pre-season, while there are other candidates in the squad.

Postecoglou said [Daily Record]:

“It’s always important. Whoever your leader is it has to be someone with similar ideals, values and beliefs that I have.

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“With Scott Brown leaving it’s obviously a massive gap there. I will sit down with some good experienced players who have been here for quite a while and get their thoughts.

“Then I’ll see how they are round the place and make the decision.

“Scott Brown epitomised that. Someone who puts the club and its values above all else and drives those things.

“That’s not new – they have stood the test of time for over 100 years.

“Somebody who understands what it means to pull on the Celtic shirt and it’s history and traditions will be the person most suitable to the role.”

Callum McGregor surely the outstanding candidate for Celtic captaincy

After an era of Scott Brown being Celtic’s on-field leader, many will be concerned about McGregor’s suitability. Where Brown was combative, steely and charismatic, the more understated McGregor is something of a departure.

That isn’t to say he isn’t capable, however. As is often mentioned, McGregor is expected to take the role. When Brown missed games over the last few seasons, it was McGregor who was most often wearing the armband.

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Some will see this as a foregone conclusion; perhaps it should be. However, it’s testament to Postecoglou’s desire to really know his squad that he’s taking his time over this.

He’ll want to appoint a captain based on what they’re able to do now, not what they’ve done in the past, necessarily.

Speaking to senior, experienced players about their pick for the captaincy is an excellent call. It won’t necessarily be what sways Postecoglou’s decision. However, the input of the veteran players in the Celtic squad really should impact this kind of appointment.

McGregor seems like a player Postecoglou will enjoy working with, someone who can be trusted implicitly. Not rushing into deciding on the Celtic captaincy is probably the correct call to make, though.

READ MORE: Pundit lauds Celtic boss for show of faith