Celtic star in 'what this club is all about' message and the 15-year-old Champions League dream

Three words uttered by Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou were inscribed onto the club’s Scottish Premiership win last season as they took the title back from rivals Rangers.

"We never stop”.

It was the message then and it remains the message to his Celtic players, as evidenced on Saturday. Despite conceding a 93rd-minute equaliser to St Johnstone, the champions went up the pitch to score an even later winner, Georgios Giakoumakis converting an Alexandro Bernabei cross.

“That is what this club is all about,” a visibly elated Stephen Welsh said at the side of the McDiarmid Park pitch after the game.

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"As the manager said, we keep going, we never stop. We suffered a setback late on, but we kept going, we kept pursuing and Berna has done brilliantly down the left wing and thankfully that one has gone in.”

The ‘we don’t stop’ mentality will be required in abundance at Celtic Park on Tuesday evening when the team face a must-win Champions League clash against RB Leipzig, following a 3-1 loss in Germany last week. But it can also be viewed in terms of the team's identity, continuing to play the way the team and the manager believes.

“We know it is going to be tough, but we are going to go into it the same way and try to play our football, attack and press high,” Welsh said. “That is probably what you would expect from us now. It is about recovering and preparing.

"We are wanting to go and put a good performance in, play our football against Leipzig, which we did in parts on Wednesday. We have got to do that for the full 90 minutes instead of just wee bits and pieces.

Stephen Welsh celebrates Celtic's late win at St Johnstone. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

"We know it is going to be a big occasion, but I don’t think we need to play the occasion. It is about playing our football – high pressing, high tempo.”

The 15-year-old dream

On a personal level, the match could represent an extra special evening for Stephen Welsh.

The loss in Leipzig was his first experience of Champions League group stage football. Tuesday could be the culmination of a 15-year-old dream. The club's famous 2-1 win over an AC Milan side who were holders and had Kaka, Alessandro Nesta and Andrea Pirlo amongst their ranks in 2007 was his first experience of seeing Celtic at Champions League level in the flesh.

Welsh will be hoping to start Celtic's Champions League clash with RB Leipzig. (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)
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“They were the best team in the world at the time and Celtic went out and won the game," Welsh said. “Hopefully we can do the same on Tuesday night.

"It was a long time ago now. But I am here now to go and play and challenge at the top stage. It will be my first Champions League start at Celtic Park if I am picked. It is obviously good playing away from home, but a Champions League night at Celtic Park will be a different occasion.

“It is a dream, but you never actually think of it. To go and do that would be a special occasion. But I don’t think we can think of it like that. We need to think of it as a game that we need to go and perform in. We need to play our football and go and win the game.”

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