Ange on Edouard’s injury, Ajer, Rogic, Ntcham and Bolingoli

Celtic face an injury worry over striker Odsonne Edouard who limped off in the closing stages of the 2-1 win over Charlton Athletic in Newport yesterday afternoon. Afterwards manager Ange Postecoglou gave an encouraging enough update on the striker’s problem, as he prepares for the vital Champions League qualifier with FC Midtjylland a week on Tuesday.

Speaking after the match the new Celtic manager gave this update on Edouard’s injury. “He just felt his quad a bit tight,” Ange explained. “I was speaking to him there and I don’t think it is anything serious. It was just a precaution for him. He probably wanted to make sure he didn’t do any real damage to it.”

Celtic s Dane Murray Photo: Bradley Collyer

Celtic make the short journey over the border to play Bristol City on Wednesday but there’s no guarantee that the French striker will be fit to play in the third friendly as Postecoglou admitted. “We will see. It’s too early to tell. I’m hoping it’s more precautionary, but we will see.”

The Celtic manager also revealed that both Kristoffer Ajer and Tom Rogic, neither of whom has been seen in the matches against Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton could feature in the midweek match (kick-off 7.45pm for this one folks) against Bristol City.

Edouard of course is one of Celtic’s want away stars. Yesterday Postecoglou revealed that Olivier Ntcham has decided to stay at Celtic (for now anyway) and will see out the last year of his contract before making his next move. And with Celtic playing hardball over offers for Kris Ajer, it looks like the same will be the case with Odsonne Edouard with Leicester City already having walked away from negotiations with Celtic and signed an alternative target.

Celtic s Osaze Urhoghide Photo: Bradley Collyer

If Dom McKay can get £20m for Ajer and £30m for Edouard then he’ll have done some job! Postecoglou though admitted that he’s more focused on players coming in rather than exiting the squad, as that is something he can’t control.

“We are trying to get some players in and hopefully get some deals done,” Ange said. “We need some players to come in because we lost a fair few from last year. It is not an easy process at the moment, but we are pushing hard and hopefully we will get some in the next few days.”

The Celtic manager continued: “We need players in a number of positions, it’s not just one. Even looking at those who have gone from last season, purely on numbers, we need players.”

On news of bids for any of his players Ange was giving little away: “To be honest I am not as focused on outgoings as I am on incoming. Incoming is where my pure focus is at the moment. I can’t control who leaves, what I can control and push for is to bring people in.

Ewan Henderson. Photo: Bradley Collyer

“I’m focused on a couple of key areas – working on the players we have here and trying to get players in. I guess it will come down to whether players want to be a part of this or not. Some of them may have made up their minds already.

“I’m not here to plead our case at the moment. If people want to be part of it I’m happy to include them. My focus is on those who will stay. It’s a day to day process.

“You’ve got to remember I have only work been working with these players for five or six days. The starting XI for Midtjylland will probably only be decided the day before. We still have a lot of work to do.”

On the possibility of Celtic appointing a Director of Football: “Again, that’s not where my focus is. There are literally only 24 hours in the day and I’m spending them on the things I think will help us in the short term. There is a time and a place for those kind of discussions and that time is not now.”

Mikey Johnston. Photo Bradley Collyer

Confirming the change of heart by Olivier Ntcham: “I had chats with him and he said he wanted to come back and make an impression this year. I take that at face value. He has been good at training. Today was his first game in quite a while. He is lacking a bit of match touch and fitness, but he is part of the squad and hopefully he can make an impact this year.”

And what about Boli Bolingoli? “Boli is training well. He was due to play today but he picked up a bit of a niggle. We are hoping it won’t keep him out for too long, maybe two or three days.

“While they are here, they have all got a future. I can’t control who wants to stay and who wants to leave. If people don’t want to stay that’s fine. But anyone who is here at the moment, I will treat them as part of the group and give everyone an opportunity to be part of where we are heading.”

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

1 Comment

  1. Justshatered on

    So we’re playing hardball with bids for Ajer and Edouard.
    We are in no position to play hardball.
    Here is the reality of the situation: both players are in the final year of their contracts, Edouard downed tools last season and his back up Griffiths is just a tool by his behaviour. We have a massive rebuild of our squad required. Julien won’t be back before September. Like or not, Celtic run as a business so the rebuild will gave to cone from sales.
    Our Board now won’t sell players fo realistic prices in a pandemic and until they do, we don’t have money for a rebuild. That unfortunately is reality.