Thomas Broich on the moment he saw Celtic boss Ange's temper up close
As personable and relatable as Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou is, you wouldn’t want to get on his bad side.
The media have seen that in short bursts, particularly when the Hoops boss takes issue with a particular narrative surrounding the club. He’s typically given short shrift to ideas he finds intolerable or questionable. That’s what he’s like with the press, at least.
But Thomas Broich, a key man for Brisbane Roar in Ange’s time, has revealed how high Ange’s expectations are, and shared a moment when Postecoglou’s tone shifted in the pursuit of better standards.
Brisbane Roar won back-to-back A League titles with Postecoglou. But after the second, Ange wasn’t best pleased with his side, despite the silverware. Broich told the Scottish Daily Mail [print edition, 06/01/22 p.84]: “In year two at Brisbane, we had a lot of injuries, a lot of issues, and we just missed out on winning the league; we finished second.
“But then we went into the finals, everyone was back and we ended up winning the championship. Back-to-back titles. Before he sent us off on our break, he spoke to the players. And this was just after we won the championship, remember.
“He looked us in the eye and said: “If you think it’s good enough to come second in this league, think again”.
“So it was like: “Congrats on winning the championship but…” He was so upset about us not winning the league to go with the title, like that was a failure to him. That’s his standard. He’s relentless. And only perfection will do.
“He can be very, very grumpy, actually. It’s not easy to satisfy him. You really have to play the best football, the hardest way you can — and then he might walk off the pitch with a smile. Might!”
Celtic players will already know that disappointing Ange Postecoglou is not an option
Let’s be clear; it’s not as if Ange is some taskmaster who doesn’t protect his players, either. When the Hoops came under heavy criticism early in the season, Postecoglou was entirely defensive of his squad, and will remain so.
But that has a price, and it’s continuing to play hard and win matches for Celtic. Postecoglou has never struck Bhoys fans as a manager to be messed with, whether you’re a player or a journalist. And his standards are sky-high. That’s what’s made him a serial winner throughout an impressive career.
He’s shown utter ruthlessness in the past. Ange jettisoned Bob Malcolm, Craig Moore and Charlie Miller when he arrived at Brisbane Roar, because they didn’t meet the manager’s demands. A commendable decision; as Broich shows, they won subsequently won consecutive titles.
It’s a shape up or ship out culture at Celtic under Ange, then. And as Broich indicates, nothing less than the best is good enough for the Hoops manager, who’s won the only Scottish silverware available to him thus far.
Far as Celtic fans are concerned, having a manager obsessed with high standards can only be a good thing.