ANGE POSTECOGLOU is preparing Celtic “to make an impact” when they take on RB Leipzig in the Champions League Group F encounter at the Red Bull Arena tomorrow night.
The Bundesliga club, without a win following losses to Shakhtar Donetsk and Real Madrid, go into the meeting determined to grab a lifeline after their false start.
The 4-1 setback at home to the Ukrainian outfit last month cost head coach Dominico Tedesco his job with Marco Rose now in charge of the club’s fortunes.
EURO AGONY…Ange Postecoglou reacts to another missed chance against Shaktar Donetsk last month.
Postecoglou, of course, is plotting for the Hoops’ first win in Europe’s elite competition following a home loss against the European champions and a draw against Shakhtar in Poland where he watched in anguish as his players scorned excellent opportunities to claim a much-needed victory.
But the reset button has been pushed and the title-winners go again in Leipzig with a 5.45pm kick-off and three points up for grabs.
Reflecting on the experiences in the tournament so far, the Greek-Australian gaffer said: “It’s been good, I would enjoy it more if we’d won, obviously because you want to win games of football.
“But it’s just great to be performing at that level again and it’s where the club needs to be, wants to be and now the challenge for us is to grow every time we’re out there.
EURO AGONY…Reo Hatate is too late to prevent Luka Modric scoring Real Madrid’s second goal in the Spaniards’ 3-0 win at Parkhead.
“I guess for the players, that initial excitement in the first game, the buzz of being in the Champions League, particularly here at home playing against Real Madrid was fantastic, but now we’ve done that it’s about ‘let’s make an impact at that level’.
“So, it doesn’t mean the challenge is getting any easier, because Leipzig away is a pretty tough challenge, but, as I said now, it’s about really wanting us to be present at that stage, to be competitive at that stage and growing every time we’re out there.”
Commenting on tomorrow night’s opponents, Postecoglou, speaking to Celtic TV, added: “They had a little bit of a disrupted start to the season.
“But the change of manager seems to have sparked them a little bit. All the traditional trademarks of their football are there, they’ve got a lot of speed, very dynamic and in terms of transition football they’re quick.
“When you’re playing away in the Champions League, there’s always a massive challenge to overcome those hurdles.
“But I think it will be a good game for us to measure our football, measure ourselves and we’ll be ready for it.”