CHRIS SUTTON hailed the philosophy of Ange Postecoglou following Celtic’s rampant 3-0 midweek win over Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s shell-shocked Ibrox outfit at a pulsating Parkhead.

The Hoops boss kept everything in persepctive and reminded everyone no-one wins a title in February, despite an emphatic and pulverising performance in the Glasgow derby.

The former goal hero didn’t hold back, though, as he insisted his old team had delivered “a brutal beating” to the visitors with the points practically assured following a 45-minute whirlwind in which the outstanding Reo Hatate had thumped in two excellent efforts from outside the box and set up Liel Abada for a third.

Sutton offered a well-deserved round of applause as he said: “Ange Postecoglou has shown himself to be spot-on with his tactics.

“But what is just as impressive about the Celtic manager are his talks.

“And it’s his straight-to-the-point and grounded assessments which offer genuine belief that his team might just do the incredible and go on to win the Premiership title.

A BIG HAND…a beaming Ange Postecoglou applauds the fans after the midweek romp.

“Postecoglou’s philosophy on the pitch has Celtic rocking again. The stadium was electric as his team put an end to their run over two years without a win against Rangers in stunning style.

“It was a dynamic performance and Postecoglou had every right to enjoy it and milk it at full-time.

“But he was barely off the park and the really impressive bit began.

“Straight away, he was bringing everyone connected with Celtic right back to the ground with his words.

“He said before the game that nothing is decided in February and that wasn’t going to change in the wake of the win. It was a perfect pitch, just the right tone.

“The mantra was simple. You’ve done well, lads, but the hard work is nowhere near done.”

Sutton, speaking to the Daily Record, continued: “Postecoglou knows it. He knows people had his team written off back in the early weeks of the season and that has been proven nonsense.

“Now he’ll know it’s just as nonsensical for anyone inside the camp to think the hard work is done.

BUSINESS AS USUAL…Ange Postecoglou back at Lennoxtown in the aftermath of the the midweek victory.

“It most certainly is not and the way he and his captain were getting that message across immediately to the new boys to get the minds on Motherwell tomorrow was key.

“In fairness, you cannot blame many of the supporters for getting carried away in the moment in the aftermath of the Wednesday win because it was sensational.

“Celtic didn’t just beat Rangers. They absolutely pumped them. It was a brutal beating.

“It was everything Postecoglou has been instilling into the team since he arrived.

“Fast-paced attacking football where the chances made are finished off with ruthless conviction and it’s coupled with discipline at the back.

“The balance was absolutely perfect and the fact it was delivered by so many new faces speaks volumes for the manager.

“I’ve said it a million times, but recruitment is absolutely key when it comes to the success of a boss and Postecoglou’s strike rate in the market is fantastic.

“It has needed to be because there is no chance his team could be in this position with 14 games to go if he had more misses than hits.”

ON THE BALL…instant fans’ favourite Reo Hatate.

Sutton added: “Cameron Carter-Vickers, Jota and Josip Juranovic were magnificent in the win. Carl Starfelt played well. I thought Giorgos Giakoumakis looked good.

“He looks for the ball, he shows for it and gives the team a different dimension to Daizen Maeda, who looks to want to run in behind on first pieces of evidence.

“Where do you start with Liel Abada? Aged 19 when walking in the door and taking the place by storm. His all-round display was absolutely brilliant.

“The Israeli kid was always going to have moments of inconsistency, but he has shone for the majority and has come good at a key time. That’s 13 goals already for Abada this season and there’s no sign of the tally being halted unless injury stalls his momentum.

“How many Celtic fans could have told you in the middle of December who Reo Hatate and Matt O’Riley were and what their attributes were?

“They’ve been in the door for two minutes and already they are part of the furniture. Hatate looks like a class act. O’Riley has slotted perfectly into his role.

“It was hard to imagine Tom Rogic could go away on international duty and no-one would notice he was absent due to O’Riley’s displays. That’s just brilliant recruitment.

HAIL THE HEROES…masked skipper Callum McGregor and team-mates Cameron Carter-Vickers, Daizen Maeda, Liel Abada, Ismaila Soro and James Forrest accept the rapturous acknowledgement of 60,000 delirious fans. 

“Hatate has just walked into David Turnbull’s position and looks classy. Celtic are doing all of this without their top scorer in Kyogo Furuhashi.

“It’s week on week. It’s why delivering with just as much conviction and dominance against Motherwell tomorrow and up at Aberdeen on Wednesday is just as important.

“Having fought so hard to get to the top, it would be criminal if Celtic gave the advantage back in the week after they got there.

“Callum McGregor knows it and, crucially, so does Postecoglou. He can’t be any clearer with his words to the group.

“So far, they have carried out his tactical plans superbly.

“If they act on his words and warnings, Celtic might just pull off this incredible title triumph.”

All eyes are now on Fir Park for tomorrow’s 1.30pm kick-off with Rogic and Nir Bitton, suspended for the midweek triumph, back in the manager’s squad.

Van Bronckhorst’s team meet Hearts in Govan with a 4pm start on a day that could prove to be pivotal in Celtic’s pursuit of their TENTH championship in 11 years.

Click Here for Comments >

About Author