To borrow a line from one of his Parkhead predecessors, Ange Postecoglou is far from reaching his ‘Terminado’ moment as Celtic manager.
That’s the word Brendan Rodgers used in 2018 when it was clear the wheels were already in motion for his exit from the club.
It was at a time when Rodgers was reeling from a lack of ambition in the transfer market, the failure to sign John McGinn and his elimination from the Champions League qualifiers.
He had racked up Treble after Treble, spent just over two and a half years at Glasgow and probably felt he had pushed the club as far as he could.
Ange Postecoglou has a lot more to give as Celtic manager as he targets European success
Celtic faced Real Madrid last week to kick off their Champions League season
Rodgers was finally throwing all kinds of verbal hand grenades into Parkhead’s conference room, which made it clear that he wanted out at the next available opportunity.
Compare that to Postecoglou, who just faced European champions Real Madrid and saw his side give a great account of themselves.
It may seem odd after losing 3-0 – and no one should ever seek to glorify defeat – but anyone who watched this game will know how much trouble Celtic caused Madrid.
Listen, there will come a time when Postecoglou will move on. His managerial skills mean it’s inevitable he’ll end up poached by an English Premier League club.
Celtic performed well despite losing 3-0 at home to Real Madrid
60,000 fans were packed into Celtic’s Parkhead stadium for the game against Madrid
You would have said the exact same thing about Rodgers. Such was his stature in English football since his time at Liverpool that he was always going to return to the south.
In his eyes, Celtic has never been more than a palliative. He was on the move, ticking a box on his CV managing the club he claimed to have supported as a child.
Likewise Steven Gerrard. When he won the league with Rangers to stop ten in a row, it was only a matter of time before he was offered a job in the English Premier League.
Postecoglou is now linked with the managerial vacancy at Brighton and Hove Albion. When you’ve been involved in football for so long, few things come as a surprise.
Postecoglou set to stay at Celtic despite being linked with Brighton vacancy
You learn to expect the unexpected. But I would be absolutely amazed if Postecoglou left Celtic to join Brighton. There’s no way I can see it happening.
He’s better than that and is capable of managing at a much higher level than Brighton. I just don’t see it as a job that will get its juices flowing.
He currently leads the Champions League and just had 60,000 fans chanting his name after a ding-dong battle with Carlo Ancelotti and the latest Galacticos group.
If he were to move to Brighton, he would play to an audience around half that size, with the Amex Stadium hosting just over 30,000.
The reality is that Celtic are a much bigger and better club than Brighton. Given what he has built at Celtic, it would be absolute madness to abandon him now.
What does success look like for a club like Brighton?
Mid-table mediocrity in the English Premier League? Maybe a decent cup race?
In reality, that’s about the limit for them. Graham Potter has massively exceeded the resources available to him. That’s why he’s now landed the Chelsea job.
The Greek-born Celtic boss guided them to another Scottish Premiership title last season
At Celtic, we don’t know how far Postecoglou can take this team. After winning the league in his debut season, he will no doubt be aiming for a domestic treble this time around.
Europe is the only major box left to tick. But the performance against Madrid offered so much conviction and positivity for what Celtic can achieve this season.
There’s absolutely no reason why they shouldn’t be looking to break out of this Champions League group and qualify for the Round of 16.
They will like their chances against RB Leipzig and Shakhtar Donetsk.
Celtic gave Madrid quite the scare in the first half last week. They were excellent and could easily have gone two or three goals up at half time.
Postecoglou shared the touchline with legendary boss Carlo Ancelotti on Tuesday night
Madrid’s class finally shined and, in Luka Modric, they had a man who gave one of the best individual performances I’ve seen from any player at Celtic Park in the Champions League era. .
It was no wonder Celtic fans gave him a standing ovation when he passed away at the end.
It was a real touch of class and I saw Modric post on social media how much it meant to him.
But Celtic should derive so much confidence from his performance. They aren’t going to come up against players close to Modric’s level when they face Shakhtar and Leipzig.
In the space of just over a year, Postecoglou allowed this team to lose against Midtjylland to give Real Madrid a hard time.
Champions League foray gives Postecoglou a chance to show off his skills
Few would have thought that possible.
He’s building something special in Parkhead. Celtic fans absolutely idolize him – and I think the connection is more genuine than it was with Rodgers.
There’s no denying Rodgers’ abilities as a manager, but he also has a massive ego. I don’t see any of that with Postecoglou.
Right now he’s aiming for the stars at Celtic and rubbing shoulders with Europe’s top flight.
It’s not a relationship anyone would call “Terminado.”
Instead, for a manager adored by supporters, it really is ‘Vamos, Bhoys’.
Ange Postecoglou still awaiting his ‘Terminado’ moment from Brendan Rodgers at Celtic