Gustaf Lagerbielke has been speaking in Sweden about a frantic last week at Celtic.
The central defender only joined the Brendan Rodgers revolution in mid-August. However, it already feels like he’s played a season-and-a-half for the club. So much has happened.
We’ve had our cup exit at the hands of Kilmarnock, a dire draw with St. Johnstone and a beautiful derby win over Rangers. That’s on top of a remarkable injury crisis and the draw for the UEFA Champions League group stage.
As if that all wasn’t enough, Lagerbielke is now with the Swedish national team having been called up following an injury to Burnley’s Hjalmar Ekdal.
“Awesome,” he told Fotbollskanalen of his first derby experience. “I had been given a little warning about what it would be like, but it was somehow cooler than what was thought.
“You could tell how much it meant to both the Celtic fans and the Rangers fans as well. It was very pleasant and important that we won.”
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It’s interesting to hear that he found his first Ibrox experience “cooler” than anticipated. Perhaps it was a case of the game being talked up so much that he actually found it alright.
On the Champions League draw a few days earlier, he said: “It was a bit surreal. Then I had to pinch my arm when I was sitting on a sofa at Celtic Park and had to react to the draw.
“It’s probably the only time I’ve been nervous so far at Celtic, it was when I was sitting on that sofa. But it will be fun to play in the Champions League.
“We are facing three good teams with three very good home stadiums and fans. There will be six tough matches with an incredible setting.”
Lagerbielke should get the chance the find out more about Celtic while on his international travels. The irony of him sharing a dressing room with Carl Starfelt, the man who he was signed to replace at Celtic, won’t be lost on many.
The verdict on the former Elfsborg man is generally positive so far, even if he did look ropey at times in the derby win. He has shown real promise with his distribution and that will only come on further as he gains more experience.
He’s likely to be a starter in at least our first Champions League clash, with Cameron Carter-Vickers and Maik Nawrocki not expected back for some time yet.
He seems like the kind of guy who will relish that occasion.