“Ange Postecoglou” is not a name that rolls easily off a Scot’s tongue, but the ongoing success that the Greek-Australian has sparked in his Celtic team, inspired David Currie to weave his name into a song that Hoops’ fans sang on the terraces’ as their team beat Dundee 4-2 on Sunday.
Currie, a former pianist for Glasgow indie band the Supernaturals, adapted Wham’s 1984 hit “Last Christmas” to work the manager’s name into the song.
A smiling Postecoglou, who heard the song chanted during the match in Dundee, told the Celtic TV that: “I thought the biggest challenge would be getting ‘Postecoglou’ into a song, but they managed it – and credit to them!”
The song in his honour reflects the fans’ growing appreciation of the flowing style of play that Postecoglou has introduced to Celtic’s game as well as a consistency that has raised the team to second place on the Scottish Premiership with just four points separating them from historic rivals Glasgow Rangers.
Rangers won 4-2 at home against Ross County to hold a four-point lead over Celtic over the international break.
Fifth-placed Dundee United on 21 points could have gone to third had they beaten Celtic but Jota provided an early lead in the eighth minute, followed by a strike by teammate Kyogo Furuhsahi 11 minutes later.
Dundee responded with a goal from Danny Mullen in the 23rd minute, but Jota and Furuhashi each scored with three minutes of each other early in the second half. Dundee managed a final consolation goal in the 67th minute.
“It was an important three points and there was some excellent football at times,” Postecoglou said.
“There were a couple of moments when we were a bit sloppy, and unnecessarily paid the price for it, but, overall, considering a tough Thursday night game when we got back late from Europe, this was always going to be a real test for the boys in terms of their energy and drive.”
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Speaking about the growing popularity of Furuhashi who has scored 13 times since coming to play for Celtic at the start of the Scottish season with Postecoglou from Yokohama Marinos.
“He’s been fantastic, not just with his goals, but with the way he goes about things and his personality.
‘He loves the club, his enthusiasm is infectious, the boys love him and the crowd obviously loves him.’
“I guess I’m probably the least surprised person in Scotland about his ability because I’d seen it first-hand and I’m delighted for him and, again, there’s more to come.”
Postecoglou was critical fans using the game to protest plans to appoint Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins of Police Scotland to a senior security role with Celtic. A moment’s silence was cut short before the start of the game when Celtic fans threw tennis balls on to the pitch.
“My view on all those kind of things is that we live in a society where people are allowed to express themselves. I don’t necessarily think it’s a bad thing,” Postecoglou was quoted as saying by MSN.com.
“My preference is that it doesn’t affect the 90 minutes of football. The 90 minutes of football is the time when I want us all united, the whole football club. Ultimately that is what we are all here for, those 90 minutes.”
After the international break, Celtic host ninth-place St Johnstone for the semi-final of Scottish League Cup on 21 November. Five days later, they travel to face Group G leaders Leverkusen in the Europa League. Scottish Premiership hostilities resume with a home match against Aberdeen on 29 November.