“He’s handling it well,” Postecoglou on O’Riley’s development

Ange Postecoglou has opened up about his current thoughts on Celtic’s midfield situation following the absence of Callum McGregor due to injury.

The Celtic gaffer has been far more careful with revealing information about his signing interests than he was last Summer. With the injuries stacking up in the Celtic squad, some of these signings have been thrust into the squad without proper time to integrate into the team.

Oliver Abildgaard. Photo Kieran McManus/Shutterstock

We have had the likes of Alexandro Bernabei and Oliver Abildgaard playing first-team football for Celtic with little time to prepare for their debuts. Ange Postecoglou has discussed this situation and revealed that we will likely see a lot more of these newer signings as the Celtic squad is rotated.

Furthermore, Ange admitted his contentment with the development of Celtic midfielder Matt O’Riley, as he has mixed into the Celtic squad and secured his role in Ange Postecoglou’s midfield.

Speaking to BBC Radio Scotland, Ange said…

“I’m really pleased. Obviously, Callum is such a massive influence at this football club on and off the field, but aside from that, he’s a very good player. The way we play that position is really important.”

“When we signed Matt O’Riley we kind of knew he could play either one. With Callum being there we pushed him further up and I thought he really adapted to that role well. But in the back of my mind, I had a feeling he could play in that area. He’s really growing into it and becoming more of an influence. I’m really pleased he’s handling it well.”

Matt O’Riley during the UEFA Champions League Group F football match between Celtic FC and RB Leipzig, at the Celtic Park on October 11, 2022. (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

“With Mooy and Bernabei and even with Haksabanovic, and probably Abildgaard will come into it a bit – we’ve taken our time with those guys. They missed pre-season or were new to the club. Last season was a bit of a unique situation where we just threw guys in.”

“We were always confident as the season goes on, and they got more game time and understanding about how we play that they’d make an impact. I’m sure that they will from now on and get better for it.”

Similarly to the integration of Aaron Mooy into the Celtic squad, it’s looking like Ange is increasing the exposure of the more recent signings like Abildgaard, who picked up another 30 minutes against Motherwell in a mid-week fixture.

Aaron Mooy attempts a shot on goal during the Premier Sports Cup second round match at the Global Energy Stadium, Dingwall.  Wednesday August 31, 2022. Photo Trevor Martin

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