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Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou not taking anything for granted ahead of Europa tie

By August 16, 2021No Comments

Ange Postecoglou wants to see more proof that his players are making progress with his style of football when they host AZ Alkmaar in the Europa League.

Celtic go into Wednesday’s play-off first leg at Parkhead on the back of netting 16 goals over four consecutive wins.

Postecoglou admitted the first hour of his side’s victory over Hearts on Sunday was the type of football he wants from his team, save from not converting enough of their chances.

And he wants to see further progress against the Dutch side.

“I know people say it’s a step up but I have never looked at football that way,” the Greek-born Australian told Celtic TV. “One thing football teaches you, if you take anything for granted it will slap you right in the face.

“Every game is important, every game is a challenge. What is paramount for us is, what we have done in the last four or five games, we are increasing and improving our football and the tempo we want to play, especially at home.

“So, irrespective of the opponent, we go into Wednesday night and take that approach.”

The players’ joy at their play coming together was evident when the goals went in during Sunday’s 3-2 Premier Sports Cup triumph.

“Part of it is for them to enjoy their football as well,” Postecoglou said. “For me, that’s the best sort of encouragement I can give them.

“If they can get the rewards out there and see it come to fruition and they get that feeling that they want more if it, and they understand that to get more of it, you have got to keep buying into what we are doing.”

AZ began their Eredivisie campaign on Saturday with a 1-0 away defeat against Waalwijk.

“They are a good side, a young team, they will be full of energy as well,” Postecoglou said. “Their season has just kicked off so they will be pretty fresh.

“They will be excited about playing at Celtic in front of a capacity crowd. It will be a typical European night, there will be plenty of high-tempo, quality football and we will play our part in it.”