AARON MOOY’S arrival on a two-year deal at Celtic has not been announced with a fanfare of trumpets and banner headlines.
The 31-year-old midfielder’s signing as a free agent after leaving Chinese Superleague club Shanghai Port in January may not have gripped the imagination of the Hoops support.
And that lack of response intrigues the Parkhead club’s goalscoring great Chris Sutton after Ange Postecoglou gave the green light to another summer signing to reunite with an experienced international performer he knows well from his days as Australia head coach.
Mooy adds his considerable qualities to an engine room in the team that is now without the skills of his fellow-Socceroos ace Tom Rogic and Israeli Nir Bitton who made an emotional exit at the end of the title-winning campaign while Ivorian Ismail Soro is off on a season-long loan to Portugal.
GREEN FOR GO…Aaron Mooy proudly holds aloft the No.13 Celtic shirt.
Sutton admits he is a little taken aback by the reaction to the former St Mirren, Huddersfield Town and Brighton star.
The one-time England international forward said: “I’m surprised some people are underwhelmed about the arrival of Aaron Mooy. He’s not some kind of project player with potential.
“He’s a solid professional with a more than decent CV.
“Mooy couldn’t really be classed as a defensive midfielder, but he does play in a deeper role these days and I would think he’d be an ideal back-up for Callum McGregor.
“He could even play alongside the captain in certain games, perhaps in Europe.
“Moritz Jenz is a bit of an unknown, but there wasn’t much wrong with the first-choice partnership of Carl Starfelt and Cameron Carter-Vickers last season.
WILLKOMMEN…Moritz Jenz is ready to make an impression during his season-long loan.
“Starfelt got off to a shaky start to become one of the top performers. We can assume the manager doesn’t really fancy Christopher Jullien, but Stephen Welsh is there, too, so it will be up to him and Jenz to show they can provide the strength in depth required.”
Sutton, speaking to the Daily Record, continued: “Some Celtic fans might be looking at the Rangers recruitment drive across the city and starting to feel a bit nervous about the coming season.
“But the people who matter inside Celtic Park need to ignore what’s going on in Govan – just like we did in 2000.
“Rangers took a bit of stick for taking their time to get going in the transfer market this close season, but they are making up for lost time now. Ben Davies is the latest to arrive for decent money and undoubtedly big wages and he follows the likes of Rabbi Matondo, Malik Tillman, Antonio Colak and Tom Lawrence.
“They might not be done yet, either. But it’s nothing new.
HE CAME, HE SAW, HE CONQUERED…Chris Sutton celebrates a winner against Rangers.
“Celtic fans fondly remember the summer of 2000. Presumably because that’s when I arrived. There were others, too, with Alan Thompson, Joos Valgaeren, Didier Agathe and Rab Douglas, followed by Neil Lennon a few months later as Martin O’Neill’s era got under way.
“People forget what Rangers did that summer. They spent absolute fortunes. Huge amounts were thrown at the likes of Ronald de Boer, Fernando Ricksen, Bert Konterman, Peter Lovenkrands and Kenny Miller.
“They also shattered the Scottish transfer record by signing my old Chelsea team-mate Tore Andre Flo for £12million.
“It must have been about a £40million outlay which sure puts this summer’s spree into context.
“But we didn’t bat an eyelid back then and Celtic’s shouldn’t now. It’s about what they do in the market and you’ve got to say Ange Postecoglou hasn’t got much wrong so far.”
Sutton commented: “In terms of Rangers, there looks to be some decent signings on paper. We’ll have to wait and see, but nothing is guaranteed.
THE THINKER…Ange Postecoglou ponders over the new season during training at Lennoxtown.
“We all thought Amado Diala was going to be a smash hit in these parts, but that didn’t quite work out.
“Same goes for Aaron Ramsay. He was the greatest capture since Gazza, but barely made a mark.
“Regardless of the arrivals, I believe Rangers might have been weakened by the departures of Cavin Bassey and Joe Aribo, even if it has allowed them to slash the cash they made.
“The new arrivals will need to settle quickly because there’s not going to be any margin of error this season, that’s for sure.
“Celtic can keep an eye on what’s happening over the river, but they need to concentrate on their own job of improving on last season.
“That’s how we approached it. We just assumed Rangers would spend big money, because that’s what they always did.
“I remember the 90s and seeing the likes of Brian Laudrup, Gazza, Arthur Numan, Gio van Bronckhorst and so on heading there. Top European players.
“Before then we saw the England captain Terry Butcher, Chris Woods, Trevor Steven, all these famous faces going to Ibrox.
THE LAST LINE…Joe Hart leads fellow-keepers Scott Bain and Benji Siegrist during a training routine.
“It’s the way it was and we couldn’t get hung up about who was going there. We had our own task in hand and I’m sure that’s how Postecoglou will be approaching it at Parkhead.
“He’s certainly earned the trust of the club and supporters in the transfer market.”
The former Celtic fans’ favourite added: “I know there’s been some supporters concerned about some of the defensive displays in pre-season, but I wouldn’t get too worked up about it just yet.
“Yes, they’ve conceded more goals than they would have liked, but you have to be careful not to jump to conclusions in these games.
“If you look at it, most of the goals against have come when there’s been a ton of substitutions made and the matches got a bit disjointed.
“There was some impressive attacking play against Blackburn and Legia Warsaw and I know what it’s like to be involved in these bounce games. It’s hard to really care.
“It’ll be the same when my old clubs collide this afternoon, with Norwich City in Glasgow.
THREE CHEERS…James Forrest, Liel Abada and Daizen Maeda performed in the first-half against Legia Warsaw where Celtic raced to a 2-0 lead at the interval.
“The match will be interesting, but it won’t give us too many clues, likewise across the city when Rangers take on Spurs.
“Now is the time the supporters start sizing up their rivals and trying to see where the strengths and weaknesses lie.
“But when I was at Celtic I didn’t look at the guys on the other side of the tunnel. I looked alongside me and saw guys like Henrik, Paul Lambert, Johan Mjallby and all the others and I always felt we were a right good side and I fancied our chances regardless of the opposition.”
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