Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou has warned that Aaron Ramsey’s status does not guarantee the midfielder on loan from Juventus will succeed at Rangers. Ramsey was a surprise arrival on deadline day at Ibrox and although he may not be fit enough to face Celtic on Wednesday night, there is excitement in the blue half of Glasgow as the former Manchester City player ‘Arsenal could have a say in the title race.
Rangers are two points clear of their oldest foes as they travel to Celtic for the second Old Firm game of the campaign. Postecoglou, while insisting he is much more interested in his own staff, pointed to the lack of fanfare around the summer arrival of Kyogo Furuhashi – who has excelled at Celtic – when asked on Ramsey.
“I’m not really affected by what other people are doing,” he said. “I’ve said it before: I focus on what’s going on here. You can’t begin to worry about what other clubs could potentially do or which players they bring.
“At the end of the day, all of these things come down to performance. No one had heard of Kyogo but you can’t tell me he didn’t have an impact. It’s more about the impact they have. When opposing teams bring in new players, it’s about watching how they behave and how they fit in and we try to counter that. There are no guarantees? Absoutely. And it’s not an easy league to make. It has already been proven. But my point of view is on us.
Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst said of the latest high-profile arrival in Scottish football: “To be able to bring in a player like Aaron was a very good opportunity for us. He will bring experience and quality to the team. It’s too early for him to get involved [against Celtic] but I expect him to be in the team very soon.
Celtic could call on their captain, Callum McGregor, despite the serious facial injury he suffered in a Scottish Cup draw at Alloa less than two weeks ago. “He will only play if he feels he is at his best,” Postecoglou said. “If he thinks he can’t be at his best, he’ll wait until it’s the right time. I don’t doubt his courage or his intention to play, but he also wants to be at his best because he knows that it’s an important game and he wants to help in the right way possible.
Celtic have not beaten Rangers in the league since September 2019 and not at all since December of the same year. After Rangers won the Championship with 25 points to spare last season, the teams’ closeness so far has led to rave reviews for Postecoglou.
“That kind of narrative works well, but the reality is that when you represent this football club, even if you have won the last nine, you are expected to win the 10th,” said the Australian. “It doesn’t matter if you’ve won or lost in previous encounters. What’s important is what you do in the next one. We have to go out there and play our football. We’ve been fit and consistent for quite a while We’ll bring that to this game and hope it gets the job done.