What Ange Postecoglou is seeing behind-the-scenes at Celtic bodes very well; bounce game indicators

By Dave Flanigan

August 13, 2022

Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou has praised the “first-rate” attitude and application of his fringe players amid Celtic’s light early-season fixture list.

With automatic Champions League group stage football secured for the first time in over a decade, Celtic have enjoyed an unusually sparse fixture calendar, playing only two games so far, but the Aussie claims that the players not yet involved will have a part to play.

As reported by The Scotsman, he said: “The challenge is for the players to continue to train every day and keep the performance levels high every time they play, so when the inevitable opportunity comes, they are ready to take it.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

“At the moment our training levels have been very good, very high standard, very competitive, very intense. Because we only have a game a week, so some players aren’t playing and to compensate for that they have got to work hard in training.”

Postecoglou has insisted that he’s keeping the whole squad on their toes despite the lack of fixtures, and with the Champions League due to commence next month, Celtic’s slow start won’t last long.

He said: “The inevitability is their opportunity will come and that opportunity could come in a Champions League game and what they have got to know is they are prepared for that. There is no point getting that opportunity and saying, ‘I didn’t think I was going to play, I wasn’t ready for it’.

“The players are well aware of that and their attitude has been first rate in terms of making sure our training has been really competitive and they are ready to go.

“We have organised a couple of bounce games during the week and the indicators there are that everyone is ready to go, and that’s all I really need to see.”

Celtic’s depth is a welcome problem to have given the team’s injury woes last season, which peaked in December when Postecoglou’s side had to cope without a recognised striker for several games.

Although some will likely leave before the conclusion of the transfer window, Celtic look to be in a good place in terms of both quality and numbers, with the floor of the squad pulled up significantly this summer.

With players out injured, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see some of the fringe players given minutes tomorrow when Celtic travel to Ayrshire to take on Kilmarnock at Rugby Park.

In other news: Ange Postecoglou shares Josip Juranovic’s strong Celtic motivation amid transfer reports