SEAD HAKSABANOVIC has revealed he is living the dream as Celtic prepare for another Champions League test against RB Leipzig in Germany tomorrow night.
The Montenegro international raider is hoping to get the nod from Ange Postecoglou to make this third appearance in Europe’s elite competition.
The versatile Haksabanovic, who arrived from Rubin Kazan in the summer, played a cameo role in the 3-0 loss to Real Madrid in the opening match in Group F at Parkhead and started the game against Shakhtar Donetsk in Poland that ended in a 1-1 stalemate.
Now he could figure in the Red Bull Arena against the Bundesliga – a far cry from training on his own in his native Sweden as he worked on his fitness levels while waiting for a move from the Russian club.
GREY DAY…Sead Haksabanovic on the ball in Paisley.
Asked if could have anticipated such a switcharound in fortunes, Haksabanovic admitted: “No chance. It’s a dream to play in the Champions League.
“When I was playing football as a kid, I watched the Champions League and, when I was running around playing with my friends, I would be screaming about being in the Champions League.
“Who was I pretending to be back then? Ronaldinho, maybe. It’s just amazing and my friends are really happy for me, as well. It’s the biggest stage. It’s where everyone wants to get to.”
Haksabanovic understands the traditions of Celtic and is friends with Henrik Larsson’s son Jordan. He acknowledges the success enjoyed by his dad and the likes of his countrymen Johan Mjallby and Mikael Lustig in the east end of Glasgow.
ON THE RUN…Sead Haksabanovic attacks the Shakhtar Donetsk defence in Poland.
The exciting forward, speaking to the Daily Record, continued: “I looked up to these guys a lot. Henrik’s son is my good friend. So, I know a lot about what he has done here.
“I have seen clips of it, so I am just going to do my best and see if I can achieve 10 percent of what he did.”
Haksabanovic kept Larsson Jnr in the dark about his move to Parkhead and added: “I didn’t because I didn’t want anybody to know.
“But he messaged me when it was done and said: ‘We are happy for you, it’s a great club, they will take care of you, if you need anything you can ask me’.
“I love to play football, I love to make money for my family and to help them.
“If I had one leg on which to play football, I would still do it!”