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Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou declared he would never take the appreciation of the supporters for granted after he was given a warm reception following his 100th game in charge.

Postecoglou was the focus of attention as Celtic players and the manager thanked the fans for their backing during Wednesday’s 3-1 win over Hearts, which maintained their nine-point lead in the cinch Premiership.

A banner was held aloft which read: ‘Gone by Christmas? Here’s to 100 more’, referencing Postecoglou’s difficult start when he lost six of his first seven away games while in the early stages of a major rebuild.

Celtic v Hearts
Celtic fans with a banner referencing their manager, Ange Postecoglou, following his 100th game as manager,(PA)

The 57-year-old said: “I don’t take for granted the support I have had from day one. From the moment I arrived, I haven’t felt anything but support from the fans.

“Even at times when it probably wasn’t that evident what we were doing, they got behind the team and got behind me. That’s never been lost on me or taken for granted.

“I appreciate all the support I have had and my role within that is to repay that and that’s what I try to do on a daily basis.”

Greg Taylor
Celtic’s Greg Taylor is fit ahead of Saturday’s Scottish Cup tie against Hearts (PA)

Celtic won without Greg Taylor in the 20-man squad but the left-back was only rested ahead of Saturday’s Scottish Cup quarter-final against Hearts, along with right-back Alistair Johnston.

When asked about Taylor, Postecoglou said: “He is fine. At a stretch he could have played but we are just being a bit cautious with him.

“Him and Alistair have played a lot and the full-back roles are very demanding in our team.

“To ask them to play three games in six days, I just thought it was a good night to give them a breather and use the energy that Tony (Ralston) and Alexandro (Bernabei)  have.”