Ange Postecoglou swerves Celtic greats comparison as Parkhead boss insists he’s only getting started

Ange Postecoglou knows he could be dining in the company of Celtic greats such as Brendan Rodgers and Martin O’Neill if he wins the Treble in his first season.

But the Australian is quick to recognize he could be eating at an entirely different table should the Hoops make a mess of their bid for a clean sweep.

Just eight games remain on the 56-year-old’s debut season in Scotland and five league wins combined with two victories in the Scottish Cup would secure the lot.

Not that he’s looking too far ahead though.

The only thing on his mind is taking care of St Johnstone this afternoon. When it was pointed out to him he was close to joining Rodgers and O’Neill as debutant Treble winners, he replied gruffly: “That would always be good company in any situation.

“From my perspective what’s important is we have to beat St Johnstone. If we don’t do that I will be having company with other people you have not mentioned, so I don’t think too far ahead.

“There’s eight games to go. We have an important game against St Johnstone, it will be a tough game as they all are at this time of year and we have to prepare ourselves right and make sure we can be the best we can be.

“When we’ve done that the last few months we’ve got the result we wanted.”

Postecoglou insists that Celtic’s lack of midweek action is having no bearing on the title race.

The leaders have a chance to stretch the gap at the top to nine points against Saints with Rangers not in action until tomorrow after their Europa League exertions on Thursday.

Some onlookers have claimed that’s only strengthening Celtic’s charge to a Treble, with a Scottish Cup semi-final against the Ibrox side next Sunday three days after Gers’ return tie with Braga.

But Postecoglou has dismissed any notion his side hold a scheduling advantage – pointing to the fact they are 32 games unbeaten domestically.

The Hoops boss – who is without James Forrest but could unleash Kyogo
Furuhashi for the first time since Boxing Day against Saints this afternoon – said: “Our form has been pretty good for quite a while.

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“We’ve not lost a game for quite a few months and in that time we had quite a few midweek games.

“We are in a great space at the moment, our business in January has helped us be in that position because we’ve been able to rotate players and allowed those coming back from injury like Kyogo and David
Turnbull not to be rushed.

“If we did have midweek games then there’s not a squad better placed in this competition to be able to handle it with the players at our disposal.

“All we can do is get three points, perform well and that moves us a step closer to what we want to achieve.

“What other teams do in is irrelevant. If we were chasing a team then I would be looking at other results.

“But we’re not and we don’t have to look at anyone… if we keep winning we will be in a good spot.”

Record Sport this week revealed Cameron Carter-Vickers is edging closer to making his loan permanent and talks are ongoing with the defender and Benfica winger Jota over extending their stay in Glasgow.

Postecoglou said: “It’s still ongoing. The last thing in their minds is next year as they see the possibilities of what we can do this year.

“For all of us I guarantee you that if we continue like we are with our success this year then nobody is going to be unhappy.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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