McCARTHY MOVE? ‘NOT ON MY RADAR, MATE,’ INSISTS POSTECOGLOU

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ANGE POSTECOGLOU has shrugged off suggestions James McCarthy may be heading for the Celtic exit before the transfer window closes at the end of the month.

The Republic of Ireland midfielder, 31, made only six starts in 13 appearances after agreeing a four-year deal last August following his departure from Crystal Palace.

That has triggered reports McCarthy may be looking elsewhere for game-time, but his former Wigan team-mate Gary Caldwell insisted the anchorman still had a lot to offer and there would be a queue of clubs across the border willing to snap him up, as CQN reported during the week.

SEEING DOUBLE…James McCarthy, backed up by Josip Juranovic, in action during the 3-0 Scottish Cup win over Dundee United at tannadice in March.

The smooth operator failed to make the substitutes’ bench for the opening-day 2-0 win over Aberdeen last Sunday while Aaron Mooy, who plays in a similar position, made his debut in the second-half shortly afar agreeing a two-year switch to the champions.

Asked about the tales linking McCarthy with a move from Glasgow, Postecoglou replied: “Not on my radar, mate.

“I’m dealing with what’s in front of me. Macca is still training with us. He is part of the squad. So in terms of what is happening beyond that it’s not on my radar.”

However, the Greek-Australian gaffer admitted the Hoops are still on the look-out for recruits, despite summer deals that saw Filipe Jota, Cameron Carter-Vickers and Daizen Maeda agree permanents terms while £3.75million Argentinian left-back Alexandro Bernabei, Swiss keeper Benji Siegrist and Aussie international Mooy signed on while German central defender Moritz Jenz join on loan from Lorient.

IN THE BALANCE…Mikey Johnston could be heading out on loan this month.

Christopher Jullien, Albian Ajeti and Mikey Johnston could all be on the way and Postecoglou commented: “I think I’ve said that while the window’s open we are still active.

“Nothing definite, but while the window’s open we are expecting that if the opportunity arises for the right kind of player that we can move for it, but that also means there could be some people outgoing, as well.

“So, we have just have got to stay alert and active. However, between now and the end of the window I’ve already said if the right opportunity comes along that I feel we need then we will take it.

“Like I said, nothing really definite at the moment.”

Next up for Postecoglou is today’s game at Dingwall and the Hoops boss, speaking to the Daily Record, added: “Every game and situation has its own challenge.

RISE AND SHINE…Anthony Ralston leaps high to power in the stoppage-time winner against Ross County in Dingwall on December 15.

“I’d hate to dismiss this as a difficult fixture just because of the venue, I think it is a difficult fixture because of the opposition you also face.

“Obviously, Ross County are a good side, they make it hard for the opposition whoever goes there.

“I can tell you that when Anthony Ralston stuck one in in the last minute it felt like Celtic Park in those moments. The atmosphere is still pretty decent so, for us, we have just got to focus on playing our football, whatever challenge there is.

“What we showed last year, and so far this year, is that irrespective of what has been put before us, if we can play our football, stick to the task and be disciplined then we are hard to stop.”

* DON’T miss the unbatable match report and best action images from Ross County v Celtic this afternoon – only in your champion CQN.

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