CELTIC boss Ange Postecoglou admitted he AGREES Josip Juranovic is leaving the champions at the right time.
The Hoops boss is resigned to losing the Croatian World Cup defender as he heads to Union Berlin in the Bundesliga in a reported £10million transfer.
Postecoglou also praised Juranovic for his efforts for the club following his £2.5million arrival from Legia Warsaw in August 2021.
The Greek-Australian gaffer, who saw his side coast into the Scottish Cup fifth round following their 5-0 win over Morton, said: “I can’t question Josip’s contribution, he has been fantastic.
HAMPDEN JOY…Josip Juranovic celebrates with two-goal Kyogo Furuhashi after Celtic’s 2-1 Premier Sports League Cup win over Hibs in December 2021.
“Josip has absolutely loved his time here and he will remember it fondly and he gets an opportunity to do further things in his career and for his family. He’s been given permission to travel and he’ll have a medical with Union Berlin.
“I assume that if all goes well, then he’ll move. I’ve loved working with Josip. He’s been a really popular member of the dressing room, he’s been a key contributor last year to what was a very, very important season, in the context of what had happened the season before.
“The fact we had to rebuild the team and get back to where we wanted to be in terms of champions then he was a key component of that.
“With all of the lads, I’m constantly in dialogue with them about themselves and their careers and people have to appreciate Josip is 27 years old, but he hasn’t really got to the highest level until late in his career.”
Postecoglou, speaking to the Daily Record, added: “He just wants to maximise his opportunities, to be honest. I agree with him. That’s what all of us have in our careers, a limited time and we want to take opportunities.
THAT’S MY BHOY…Ange Postecoglou congratulates Josip Juranovic after another Celtic win.
“He leaves here as a fantastic player and as somebody who contributed to what was a really important season for us.
“I certainly wish him well and I hope he goes over there and kills it. He’s very well respected within our dressing room and will be missed, but that is the nature of football.”
Juranovic watched from the stand as the Hoops notched five against their Championship opponents with Aaron Mooy and Kyogo Furuhashi hitting doubles and David Turnbull contributing another controlled long-range effort.
Canadian World Cup right-back Alistair Johnston, who cost £3.5million when he agreed to the move from MLS club CF Montreal last month, played his fourth first-team game against the Greenock club.
He came through with a solid performance while Anthony Ralston is still sidelined with a troublesome back problem.