Lowlands bound: former Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou is set to take the helm of Scottish giants Celtic. Photo: JULIAN SMITH/ AAP IMAGE

Why Ange will succeed at Celtic

June 17, 2021 BY
FORMER Australian goalkeeper and expert analyst Mark Bosnich believes Ange Postecoglou has the tactical acumen and winning experience to succeed as Celtic manager.

The 55-year-old will take the reins at Parkhead on a rolling contract, after bringing silverware to Brisbane Roar, the Socceroos and Japanese club Yokohama F. Marinos in the last decade.

“For Australian football it’s as big as it comes, there’s no doubt about that,” Bosnich told SEN Breakfast.

“In terms of the realm of world football, it’s big news. Celtic are a massive football club, they’ve got the worldwide support of millions.

“It’s great news for Australian football, and I believe eventually it will be great news for Celtic Football Club as well.”

Bosnich says Postecoglou will be on a hiding to nothing in Scotland, where the Glasgow giants have had a hold on the Premiership since northern club Aberdeen finished seven points clear in 1984-85.

“The bottom line is that the supporters won’t have as much patience as with someone more familiar to them,” the former Manchester United custodian explained.

“They’ve got to win. They’ve come off the back of winning nine in a row, they lost the title last season to Rangers by 25 points.

“It’s not going to be easy… but if there’s a man that can take them back to the summit of the Scottish Premiership, it’s Ange. I truly believe that.”

A decade ago, Postecoglou transformed Australians’ expectations of the football the domestic scene could produce, encouraging his players to possess the ball and manipulate space.

His Brisbane side went undefeated over 36 games, earning the ‘Roarcelona’ moniker in homage to the Blaugrana dominance of Europe under Pep Guardiola.

He was similarly aggressive in the Socceroos role, using the 2014 World Cup as a “pre-season” of sorts as he plotted a path to the victorious 2015 Asian Cup on home soil.

Australia experienced a frustrating run-up to the 2018 World Cup however, taking the long road to Russia via a play-off against Central American nation Honduras.

Postecoglou came under fire from Australian pundits, Bosnich included, for his tactical obstinacy at the time.

As the Socceroos came to the pointy end of qualification, he gave the impression he felt betrayed by the criticism, and frustrated by what he perceived as a lack of aspiration in Australia.

“At some point in time I will be replaced by ‘John the Pragmatist’ and you can all be happy and revel in it,” Postecoglou told a press conference at the 2017 Confederations Cup.

Bosnich says the South Melbourne champion has discovered his own pragmatic edge after a winning stint in Japan, however.

“The style he plays, modern football played in that style is something for fans to really behold. That’s very important,” Bosnich explained.

“He and I used to debate it at the time but he knows after being in Japan, and he’ll definitely know after being at Celtic, you need to marry it in with winning football, which he’s done in the past.

“The last thing is the determination of coming and being a bit of an outsider will drive him to success.

“Those three things, in my opinion, will give him the impetus to go on and be successful.”