ANGE POSTECOGLOU watched his Celtic side demolish Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s Ibrox outfit with a whirlwind three-goal first-half performance at a pulsating Parkhead last night.

The 3-0 triumph, with a double from Reo Hatate and one from Liel Abada, saw the Hoops take over at the summit of the Premiership for the first time this season.

Postecoglou’s men are now in pole position with a one-point advantage and 14 games to play with the countdown continuing on Sunday afternoon against Motherwell at Fir Park.

While the delirious home fans celebrated a memorable occasion, the manager remained grounded and insisted nothing had been won in terms of the title.

THE SPECIAL ONE…Ange Postecoglou celebrates another victory.

In fact, the Greek-Australian added his team must get even better in the months ahead.

Postecoglou, however, did acknowledge that he had been involved in an extraordinary evening in the east end of Glasgow and said: “I have been pretty lucky, I have had some special experiences in my football career and this was right up there.

“From the moment we walked out, the wall of noise, the energy in the stadium was just outstanding.

“From my perspective, the anxiety grows because I wanted to repay that. I wanted the players to repay that and they fed off the energy in the right way. They rose to the occasion.”

The Hoops gaffer, speaking to the Daily Record, also warned: “I don’t buy the psychological stuff.

PARADISE…Reo Hatate looks to the skies after the first of his double.

“Our end goal is to play football a certain way and to win things and we haven’t done that.

“I know what the players are like, they will do their recovery and then come back in on Friday and demand more of me and of anyone to get better.

“We want to improve and we will have to, to be the football team we want to be.”

The Celtic boss was denied the opportunity of selecting a variety of players through injury, suspension or unavailability and went into the confrontation without the skills of Kyogo Furuhashi, David Turnbull, Yosuke Ideguchi, Christopher Jullien, Nir Bitton and Tom Rogic.

Postecoglou added: “We are still missing some key players.

THREE AND EASY…Liel Abada races away after making it 3-0 before the interval.

“Being in top spot is a sign of our progression, absolutely, because we lost three of the first five or six so we know how the Scottish Premiership works.

“We had to be almost perfect to get to where we are now. We have been under pressure for a long time, but it’s testament to the players’ character and the spirit they’ve got that they haven’t let that affect them.

“They haven’t looked at the table and the points and they won’t know.”

But the good news for the manager, the players and fabulous supporters today is that Celtic are heading in the right direction to win their tenth championship in eleven years.



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