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3 key Celtic questions as Ange Postecoglou closes in on his first trophy success – Tony Haggerty

The manager inherited a shambles when he walked in the Paradise door back in July. He has since won over the players and supporters alike with his fast, slick and attacking brand of football. 

Postecoglou’s mantra of, “We never stop” was never more evident than on Wednesday night when 10-man Celtic bagged a 90+7th minute injury-time winner against Ross County in Dingwall.

This is Celtic’s toughest test of the season so far and the 56-year-old’s side has handled most domestic challenges thrown their way this season.

It would be a measure of just how far Celtic have progressed under Postecoglou if they could waltz off with the League Cup and the first trophy of the season.

However, the manager will know more than most that the Glasgow side cannot afford to be complacent and Celtic should write Hibs off at their peril, especially given quality they showed against Rangers in the semi-final.

Does Israeli Nir Bitton lose his place in midfield?

Postecoglou seems to favour his tried and tested trio of Callum McGregor, Tom Rogic and David Turnbull in the engine room whenever all three are fit to play. He may feel that all three are potential matchwinners in the Celtic side and McGregor and Rogic know what it’s like to find the net in a major final on the Hampden stage.

READ MORE: Anthony Ralston is proof the Celtic ‘fairytale’ is real – Tony Haggerty

Nir Bitton can count himself extremely unfortunate if he is the one to miss out on the showpiece because he seems to have hit a purple patch and is currently enjoying a rich vein of form.

However, the creative spark that McGregor, Rogic and Turnbull give to the Celtic team is immeasurable and it is hard to see past one of that midfield triumvirate turning out to be the difference between the two sides.

What position does man-of-the-moment Tony Ralston play?

The defender is fast becoming a talismanic figure for Celtic under Postecoglou.

Alongside Joe Hart and skipper Callum McGregor, Ralston has now cemented his place as an automatic pick for the Australian through sheer hard work and endeavour.

There is a school of thought that Ralston could be deployed in a role further forward thus providing ammunition via the wide areas. Hampden is a vast expanse of greenery and width could be vitally important in such a contest.

With five goals and five assists to his name already this season, Ralston is certainly comfortable operating at both ends of the pitch.

It remains to be seen after his midweek heroics if Postecoglou plays Ralston at his normal right-back position or indeed hands him a more makeshift attack-minded role. What is for certain is that whatever role Ralston is asked to perform for Celtic he will go about his business with gusto.

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