“All the players who’ve come here have appreciated how welcoming everyone’s been,” Ange Postecoglou

Ange Postecoglou has been speaking about his own personal delight at the news this week that Celtic’s summer tour of Japan has been confirmed thus allowing the Celtic manager to return to the country where he made such an impact as manager of Yokohama F. Marinos from December 2017 until May 2021 when he was appointed as the new manager of Celtic.

“I’m delighted we’re going, for personal reasons. I was delighted with the trip to Australia that we had and I’m delighted with a Japan trip.

“Obviously I spent four years there, know the country and a lot of people there really well. The more important thing is that this club gets to broaden its reach. With our recruiting in the last 18 months or so mainly being in Japan and Korea, there is great interest in our club there,” the Celtic manager said as reported by Scottish Sun.

“We want that to grow. We want to create millions more Celtic supporters and our presence there — in Japan, in particular — will be greatly appreciated.

“We will put back as much as we get by showing people in those countries just how much we appreciate their support. We’ll also give back to them in terms of developing their footballers and giving them new experiences.

“They have fantastic facilities, fantastic support, and there are great teams to play against. I think the players will enjoy it as well,” Ange stated.

 Tomoki Iwata was unveiled at half time during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Kilmarnock on January 07, 2023  (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The Celtic manager will also use the publicity surrounding the Asian tour, which will also include a stop-over in South Korea to play Premier League side Wolves in Suwon on Wednesday 26 July, as a selling tool to convince the some of the top talent in this part of the World, to opt for Celtic rather than one of the other European clubs chasing their signature and Postecoglou reckons that those Asian players already at Celtic – from both Japan and South Korea – will be perfectly placed to help sell Celtic to any high-profile targets that the manager may have identified for the summer transfer market.

“The market there will become more and more competitive, no doubt. So having some trust there from people is enormously helpful for us,” Ange Postecoglou explained. “I think the ones we’ve had at the club definitely help. Not just because we’re signing players and giving them an opportunity, but the players’ experiences help too.

“The best feedback you can get is from a person who’s involved. All the players who’ve come here have appreciated how welcoming everyone’s been, how the club’s looked after them, how they’ve enjoyed their time in the city and how the fans have embraced them.

“That’s better ammunition for us in terms of selling who we are, than us just trying to tell people what we can provide. It’s coming straight from the people involved and I think that’s been tremendously helpful for us,” the Celtic manager believes.

Ange also hinted at keeping the current squad in place with a few additional signings to strengthen in certain areas of the team, will be his objective for the summer transfer window as he looks ahead to participation in the Champions League Group stages which can be confirmed this afternoon with a win at Tynecastle against Hearts that will deliver a second successive league title for the manager, his fourth trophy in two seasons with the Scottish Cup Final against Inverness Caley thistle still to come on Saturday 3 June.

“The core of the squad won’t change for next season. We’re looking at areas where we can strengthen and I think there are a couple, at least. But going into a summer window you never know where else you might be affected, so what we’re going to do is make sure we’re ready whatever the outcome is.

“Our goal is to come out of the next window stronger than we go into it,” Ange Postecoglou stated, as indeed he always does when discussing the next transfer window.

Hyeongyu Oh celebrates scoring  against Hibs on Saturday March 18, 2023. Photo Steve Welsh

Incidentally talking about signings from Japan. The Celtic Star has made one of our own, swooping into the market to sign up our new Japanese writer Yatao, who you might know from social media. His first article was published last night on the site.

Here’s how Yatao introduced himself to The Celtic Star readers last night…

My name is Yatao and some of you may know me from Twitter. I am a Content Creator and Origami Art Creator, Analyst working for think tank in Japan, and I pleased to have joined this team to write articles as Japanese Celtic author for The Celtic Star.

I live in Kobe(Japan) and have followed Celtic since 14 October, 2006, when I had watched the match against Dundee United FC and Shunsuke Nakamura scored a hat-trick.

I am also an enthusiastic supporter of Vissel Kobe, and I am familiar with various information and history of the J-League. I have been posting threads on trajectory and background of Celtic Japanese players on Twitter mainly since summer of 2022 in order to further deepen the bond between Celtic and Japan. This time, I’m so proud to be more committed to Celtic by joining The Celtic Star team.

I’m good at changing of viewpoints, so please expect my articles written from fresh perspective. This is my debut article on The Celtic Star…(see below).

Yuki Kobayashi  (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

READ THIS…What Yuki Kobayashi learned from two legends Shunsuke Nakamura and Thomas Vermaelen in Japan


About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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