“The message is now we move forward together,” Calmac calls for Celtic unity

Callum McGregor took some time from his Scotland preparations to speak to Gerry McCulloch from Celtic TV about the news that Brendan Rodgers has replaced Ange Postecoglou as Celtic manager and that the existing coaching staff are all staying on at the club, despite many having the opportunity to join our former manager at Tottenham Hotspur.

Callum McGregor, who is now away for a well earned holiday after ending his season last night in the Hampden rain helping Scotland to a 2-0 win over Georgia which leaves Steve Clarke’s Scotland side with maximum points at the half way stage in the group. And it was the Celtic captain who grabbed the opening goal in the puddles that set Scotland on the way to a fine win on an incredible night at the national stadium.

20th June 2023; Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland: Euro 2024 Qualifier Football, Scotland versus Georgia; Callum McGregor of Scotland shoots and scores to make it 1-0 to Scotland in the 6th minute

On Brendan’s return the Celtic captain had this to say: “Obviously the guys at the top of the club have been working really hard and relentlessly to make this happen. You become aware of it at the start of last week and there’s been a lot of chat, and a lot of good work done to get it over the line.

“It’s great that we’ve managed to get him back and it’s obviously a really positive step for the club, it’s a real statement of intent. The guys that were here the last time really enjoyed working with him and under him, it was a really successful period.

“But just in terms of him coming back in, it’s important that we draw that line and it’s now about what we can achieve together moving forward for this new group as well.”

“He’s a top-level manager, his preparation and detail towards every single game, every single training session, every moment that he’s in the building he’s constantly thinking about football and how to make the club better, how to make the team better and on top of that, how to make the individual within the team better as well, and he’s had a brilliant track record with that everywhere he’s been.

“So the boys are really excited to work with him on a close level along with the guys who are still here at the club,” Callum McGregor said.

20th June 2023; Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland: Euro 2024 Qualifier Football, Scotland versus Georgia; Callum McGregor of Scotland celebrates after he shoots and scores to make it 1-0 to Scotland in the 6th minute

Rodgers for Postecoglou is at least a like for like in terms of elite coaching and with Brendan Rodgers bringing fresh eyes and ideas to the current squad, together with the assurances on his transfer budget to make Celtic stronger in Europe, then these look like being exciting times ahead for everyone connected with the club.

“They are really important coaches and I believe that’ll be a really good coaching team together and, like I said, it now about getting to work and trying to achieve what we can as a group. Continuity was the key message. Obviously the previous manager did a fantastic job, but he was also helped by the excellent staff that we had in building and they work really well together,” the Celtic captain stated.

20th June 2023; Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland: Euro 2024 Qualifier Football, Scotland versus Georgia; Callum McGregor of Scotland celebrates with John McGinn of Scotland after he shoots and scores to make it 1-0 to Scotland in the 6th minute

“So we wish Ange all the best in terms of he did a fantastic job for us and we wish him well, but I think the message within the group is trying to keep as much continuity as we could, because we know we’ve got a great group of staff who work tirelessly every day to make sure the club is in a good place.

“So that coupled with the return of Brendan as manager is really exciting times for the players, the club and the supporters,” Calmac reckons.

“It’s a really good group, a really positive group and I would say a really good age as well. A good mix of young players and enough experience in there as well. He’s a really hands-on type manager, so he will be really present on the training pitch, and like I said, he works really closely with the players to develop them and help teach them the game.

20th June 2023; Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland: Euro 2024 Qualifier Football, Scotland versus Georgia; Callum McGregor of Scotland celebrates with his team mates after he shoots and scores to make it 1-0 to Scotland in the 6th minute

“There’s a real game understanding when you go on the pitch and you understand exactly what you’ve been asked to do, so that’s one of his biggest strengths as a manager. So, the players will be looking forward to that and, of course, it’s a massive test for the players to get to that level and continue to improve, because that’s what the club is all about.

“You have a successful season last year, but the message is can we go again, can we improve, can we get even better,” the captain said.

And in a message to the Celtic support ahead of the new season with Brendan Rodgers back in charge, the Celtic skipper says it’s all about looking forward to achieve more success collectively. After all we want more of this…

“I think everybody should be hugely excited. Again, a new season brings new challenges, there will always be something new for the players and the group, and the supporters to handle that challenge. So it’s important that we embrace that together. We always speak about how important the supporters are and the journey with the team and the club, so we have a really exciting season, it’s now about being together.

‘We look forward to the challenges ahead – domestic honours to try and retain and hopefully a really exciting Champions League campaign as well. So it’s really exciting times, we’ve appointed the manager, the players are obviously on holiday at the minute but come a few weeks’ time everybody will be ready to come back to work and the message is now we move forward together.”

Here’s more from Callum McGregor after last night’s win at Hampden over Georgia…

 

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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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