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Carl Starfelt hails Celtic’s ‘big leaders’ after title triumph

Carl Starfelt admits he learned quickly the demands of playing for Celtic as he hailed the leaders in the changing room for inspiring them to the title.

The Sweden defender had a difficult start to his Celtic career after being pitched in to the cinch Premiership opener against Hearts 24 hours after teaming up with his new colleagues.

Celtic lost that game and their subsequent two away matches, but Wednesday’s 1-1 draw with Dundee United made it 31 league games unbeaten and saw Ange Postecoglou’s debut season title triumph officially confirmed.

Starfelt, who was one of 15 new arrivals following last season’s barren campaign, told Celtic TV: “It’s a mentality you have to develop when you play for Celtic. It comes with it. It’s from the staff, it’s the demands of the fans also, you have to go out and win every week.

“It’s something I have improved a lot since I came in and I’m sure a lot of the guys will say the same. To get the winning mentality, it’s not only in the games but also the training.

“We had a little bit of a rough start, we had a lot of new players, but we have had some great personalities.

“We had a very good leader in Ange and many of the guys in the dressing room have been big leaders. Everyone has contributed.

“It’s been a tough journey, we have been working very hard, but now we can look back at a successful season. We have really enjoyed the journey as well.

“It’s unbelievable, this is what we aimed for the whole season. It’s a proud moment for all the players, all the staff, their families, the fans as well.”

James Forrest will collect his 10th league winners’ medal when Celtic host Motherwell on Saturday and his 20th winners’ medal in total.

The winger found the demands of the fans quickly hit through to the new players.

“I think all the new signings realise pretty quick,” he said. “When you are out and about on the street, there’s also Celtic fans everywhere you go and it’s a good things because it’s made the boys settle in quick.

“Away from home, the atmosphere is always tremendous and every game there is always pressure, and that’s what you want as a player.”