CELTIC are stepping up their efforts to have Ange Postecoglou in position with pre-season training due to start at Lennoxtown a fortnight tomorrow.

The 55-year-old Athens-born former Australia manager, currently in charge of Yokohama F Marinos, is the No.1 target to succeed Neil Lennon after the move for Eddie Howe collapsed on Friday.

Postecoglou has reportedly told the Japanese club he wants to leave to accept the Parkhead challenge, but he will face a two-week isolation period when he arrives in Scotland which will prevent him from hitting the ground running in his new post.

Negotiations appear to have reached an “advanced stage”, but one former Celtic star who is far from impressed by the impending appointment is John Hartson.

The one-time goal hero admits he is not excited by the prospect of Postecoglou taking over his old team – and he reckons many of the Hoops’ fans will be feeling the same way.

Hartson said: “No disrespect to Ange Postecoglou, he comes with some raving reports, he’s a disciplinarian and plays on the front foot and attacking football, which sounds great if you’re going to manage Celtic.

“I look at the situation and think he’s managed the Australia youth side, he’s managed the national side, he’s currently managing in Japan. I just think Celtic need to be thinking bigger, in terms of their next manager.

“I was in disbelief when I heard about Eddie Howe. I couldn’t believe that the talks broke down.

“However, as I said, Celtic should still be looking bigger. Celtic is a global job. They are the team doing the chasing at the minute.

“They have to respond better than what they are.”

Hartson, speaking to Go Radio, added: “As a football club, I can understand the fans’ frustrations.

“There hasn’t been a lot of announcements, other than the one that Eddie has not taken the job.

“Other than that, it’s been a dead quiet end to the season. I want more excitement as a fan.”


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