IT was a great first season in charge of Celtic for former Australian international gaffer Ange Postecoglou.
Having missed out on the title to Rangers, the 57-year-old Greek born Aussie quickly got the club back on track, making history in the process as he lifted both the Premiership title and the Premier Sports League Cup in his opening 12 months.
Fast forward to this summer, and it has again been a very busy time with numerous new faces arriving, and plenty of old ones moving on. Many transfers surprised the fans of the club. Yet, Postecoglou has again had a bright start to the 2022/23 campaign, picking up four wins from four in the league, already establishing a five-point point advantage over Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s Ibrox outfit.
This leads us to a conclusion that Postecoglou’s decisions on the team transfers are usually well-calculated and bring success on the field.
MAN ON A MISSION…Ange Postecoglou has worked well in three transfer windows to transform Celtic.
This movement inside the team has created a storm among many bookies who rushed to analyse the decisions by the manager. These changes have caused a rift in football betting creating interesting opportunities for bettors. It is a well-known fact that Postecoglou does not gamble when it comes to choosing his players on the field.
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With Rubin Kazan midfielder Oliver Abildgaard arriving on a season-long loan he became the ninth and final recruit during the summer transfer window. We have seen 29-year-old defender Christopher Jullien complete a permanent move to French side Montpellier and plenty of fans will be left wondering what might have been had he not been sidelined for 18 months with a serious knee injury.
However, he just has not been favoured by Postecoglou following the arrivals of Cameron Carter-Vickers, at £6million from Spurs after his initial impressive season-long loan, and German centre-back Moritz Jenz, on a temporary switch from Ligue 1 side Lorient.
ALEXANDRO THE FIRST…left-back Bernabei is the first Argentinian player to turn out for the Hoops.
The full list of summer changes reads like this:
In: Alexandro Bernabei, defender (Atletico Lanus, £3.75million), Aaron Mooy, midfielder (Shanghai Port, free); Benjamin Siegrist, goalkeeper (Dundee United, free); Filipe Jota, winger (Benfica, loan to permanent, £6.5million); Cameron Carter-Vickers, defender (Spurs, loan to permanent, £6million), Daizen Maeda, forward (Yokohama F Marinos, loan to permanent, £2million), Sead Haksabanovic, forward (Ribin Kazan, £1.7million).
Out: Christopher Jullien, defender (Montpellier); Nir Bitton, midfielder (Maccabi Tel Aviv); Boli Bolingoli, defender (Mechelen); Karamoko Dembele, forward (Stade Brestois); Kerr McInroy, midfielder (Kilmarnock); Jonathan Afolabi, forward (Bohemians); Ewan Henderson, midfielder (Hibs, loan to permanent); Luca Connell, midfielder (Barnsley); Ross Doohan, goalkeeper (Tranmere Rovers, loan to permanent, undisclosed); Ethan Mitchell, goalkeeper (Annan Athletic); Tom Rogic, midfielder; Ryan Mullen, goalkeeper.
Loan in: Moritz Jenz, defender (Lorient), midfielder Oliver Abildgaard (Rubin Kazan).
Loan out: Vasilis Barkas, goalkeeper (FC Utrecht); Ismaila Soro, midfielder (Arouca); Liam Scales, defender (Aberdeen); Albian Ajeti, forward (Sturm Graz), Conor Hazard, goalkeeper (HJK Helsinki); Osaze Urhoghide, defender (KV Oostende); Adam Montgomery, defender (St Johnstone); Ben Wylie, midfielder (Airdrie).
PARADISE…Oliver Abildgaard after agreeing a season-long loan from Rubin Kazan.
Postecoglou has been busy in all three transfer windows since he arrived at Parkhead in June last year and there is every likelihood he wil go again in January.
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Speaking to the media following the 2-0 victory over Hearts last month, the manager explained: “Yeah, we can’t stand still. We’re still building. Every now and then I’ll glance at the diary and, if you go back 12 months, you’re going to have a very different picture of what our football club looked like.”
Watch this space.