ANGE POSTECOGLOU is preparing for a hectic January transfer window with players coming AND going.
The manager has promised Celtic fans money will be “invested wisely” to give supporters at team they “can be proud of” as he continues the massive rebuild he kicked off in June last year.
In his first raid on the market, the Greek-Australian gaffer brought in players such as Kyogo Furuhashi, Liel Abada, Carl Starfelt, Josip Juranovic, Giorgos Giakoumakis and Joe Hart.
Loan deals were also arranged for Filipe Jota and Cameron Carter-Vickers.
CHEERS…Filipe Jota and Matt O’Riley, two players brought to Celtic by Ange Postecoglou, celebrate the Portuguese ace’s free-kick goal in Madrid.
At the turn of the year, he introduced the J-League trio of Daizen Maeda, Reo Hatate and Yosuke Ideguchi as well as Matt O’Riley and Irish teenage striker Jonny Kenny.
In his third window, he spent £12.5milion in making the temporary switches of Jota, from Benfica, and Carter-Vickers, from Spurs, permanent while spending £3.75million on the club’s first Argentinian player Alexandro Bernabei while adding £1.7million winger Sead Haksabanovic, Aussie World Cup midfielder Aaron Mooy and back-up keeper Benji Siegrist.
Moritz Jenz, from Lorient, and Oliver Abildgaard, from Rubin Kazan, also arrived on season-long loan moves.
Japanese central defender Yuki Kobayashi is already on his way to be reunited with his former Vissel Kobe team-mate Kyogo and other ambitious deals are planned for January.
However, the Hoops are also bracing themselves for players heading through the exit and three who have featured most prominently on the transfer grapevine in recent times have been Juranovic, O’Riley and James McCarthy.
ON THE MOVE…Josip Juranovic could be a transfer target for ther clubs in January.
Postecoglou acknowledges the fact it will be a fairly hectic period of ins and outs at the champions and said: “There have been a couple of other managers talking about the fact we spend a lot of money in the transfer market. But we have 60,000 people coming to our games every week.
“They don’t expect their money to be put in my pocket and just sit in the bank somewhere.“My responsibility is to ensure their hard-earned gets invested wisely, so they can be proud of their football team. That is a responsibility.
“From the outside sometimes people think: ‘Ah, just spend money’. But there is a massive responsibility there.”
Turning his attention to the probability of some stars leaving, Postecoglou, speaking to the Scottish Sun, added: “I don’t fear losing our players. I just see that as part of the process.
JANUARY ARRIVAL…Yuki Kobayashi is expected to join the champions at the turn of the year.
“If you look at clubs who do well at Champions League level that are our size, what do they do? They develop players, sell them on and then replace them with better versions, hopefully.
“That is where I think our growth lies. I think it is part of the process. I don’t fear that.
“I think that has to happen for us to grow.
“We need to be bringing money in to be able to keep bringing better players to our club. I think it is an opportunity.
“If our players do well and move on to so-called greener pastures, if that is what they want, then there is an opportunity for me to improve the team.
“If they are going to leave us we are going to get some revenue in.”
Watch this space!