Ange Postecoglou hints heavily at more Celtic transfers and explains James McCarthy selection decision

Ange Postecoglou has doubled down on the need to further bolster his Celtic squad following Tuesday’s double-deal day that added Joe Hart and James McCarthy.

Ange Postecoglou has revealed need for careful introduction of new signing James McCarthy (pictured) with the midfielder having no real pre-season. (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group).

As the 55-year-old prepared his team in the Czech Republic for their Europa League third qualifying round first leg against Jablonec, he maintained Hart and McCarthy captures can’t be close to his last summer market moves - following the earlier arrivals Japanese forward Kyogo Furuhashi, Swedish centre-back Carl Starfelt, and Israeli teenage winger Liel Abada.

It is understood Celtic are looking to add a further quartet of new faces. They remain in negotiations for Antwerp right-back Aurelio Buta, are reported to have bid £500,000 for young Shamrock Rovers defender Liam Scales, and are believed to be pursuing other options in defence and attack.

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“I’ve been at pains to say we need to bring players in and we’ve been working hard to do that,” the Celtic manager said. “It’s a real bonus with these two guys [Hart and McCarthy]. They are both experienced, accomplished players who have played at the highest level for a long time. They were also both really motivated to come here and help and continue their careers.

“I definitely see more signings coming in. But the time-frame, and how they are, is still to be sorted. Until we actually get them I can’t really comment. There’s already been a lot of speculation about players and on occasions there have been delays totally out of our control. So I don’t want to commit to time-lines or which players might come in. But we’ll definitely get some more coming in over the next couple of weeks.”

Hart arriving directly from Tottenham Hotspur means he is in the frame for a debut in Jablonec. McCarthy pre-Celtic situation means he will not be considered, though, Postecoglou explained. “James was released by Crystal Palace at the end of last season and he has been training on his own,” the Australian said. “Joe, though, was still training with Spurs up until a couple of days ago. We’re going to assess James back in Glasgow and he’ll be working with our staff at Lennoxtown. I’ll get my first look at him at the weekend and see how he feels. We’ll be keen to get him involved as quickly as possible. But James’s situation is different to Joe’s.”

Postecoglou knows the predicament he is in following three competitive games without a victory – defeat away to Hearts in the cinch Premiership opener following on from their Champions League qualifying exit last week that resulted from a 2-1 loss to Midtjylland in Denmark on the back of a 1-1 draw in the home leg. “It’s no different [here] from anywhere else. I’m not happy if we’re not winning,” he said. “From our perspective, there’s a clear understanding, we need to get results. We need to win games of football. But I want to win games playing a certain way and playing our style. I don’t want to win games by accident or with a stroke of luck. I don’t think that fills belief. So, I’ll be looking for a strong performance tomorrow night [in] a tough game. If we get a result playing our football then I think that’s much more important than just getting a result.”

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