“A word in your ear, if I may, Mr Postecoglou…”
He’ll be getting a lot of that right now – agents and other camp-followers trying to sidle up to the new Celtic manager with more agendas than an Olympic Organising Committee.
Well I’m doing it too – the only difference being that I’m not trying to make money for myself or my clients by shouting into his shell-like. I’m doing it for purely selfless, football reasons.
And my advice is this: BRING AARON MOOY TO CELTIC!!!
There are many reasons – football and non-football – but it makes a lot of sense.
For starters, Celtic are in desperate need of a rebuild. Depending on who gets sold over the summer, Ange could need as many as a dozen new players with at least half of them ready to walk straight into the first team and play his system.
One of the greatest areas of need is defensive midfield with the departure of club legend Scott Brown (Broony).
Aaron Mooy is cut from very similar cloth – a box to box midfielder with a massive engine but with (arguably) a better passing game than Broony.
Mooy is a proven EPL standard midfielder. If you’ve ever lurked on the Huddersfield forum there were any number of commentators saying that Mooy was the greatest player ever to pull on their shirt. He also got many MOTM ratings from fans on the Brighton forum during his time there, and at both clubs, his departure was greatly lamented.
He’s been consistently one of Australia’s better performers since first selected (by Ange) in the Russia 2018 qualifiers and (I think) holds the record for a transfer fee for an Australian player (Mark Bresciano might disagree).
I was lucky enough to be in the fourth row at Kazan when Australia played France. We were so unlucky to lose that match (to the eventual champions) but Mooy was incredible. He completely bossed the midfield against Kante and Pogba and his brutal tackle on Griesmann in the first half (only about 15 metres from me) is something I’ll cherish forever.
He’ll be on ridiculous money in China so Ange will at least have to get close to that, but a factor in Ange’s favour is that Mooy will have massive non-football reasons to go to Scotland.
His wife is Scottish and he has a young family. He turned down Arnie’s invitation to the current World Cup Qualifiers because he hasn’t seen his family in months and if he’d gone to Kuwait it could have been 12 months before he got to see them.
Life in Glasgow, for Aaron and his family, would be much more congenial than the current Yuan-inspired separation and I reckon he’d be tempted – even for slightly less than he’s on now.
Mooy is the sort of quiet achiever that the Celtic fans would adore, like Western Sydney, Melbourne City, Huddersfield and Brighton fans did – and no doubt the fans at Shanghai. He’s the sort of player a manager can build a team around, as Ange would know – he’s built his team around Mooy before.
I suspect the only thing standing in the way will be Ange’s wariness of signing Australians – at least straight away. Celtic fans are among the most observant, calculating and obsessively analytical in the world. They’ll have their own ideas about the level of Australian football (and coaches) and will not take happily to a bunch of Australians coming in all at once – no matter how good.
Ange, surely, will be sensitive to that while also being a proud Australian. I believe that IF he brings in any Australians for his immediate rebuild, it will only be one or two – notwithstanding their cheapness against any Euro equivalent, and Ange’s pre-existing knowledge as to their suitability for his system.
If it’s only one, please let it be Aaron Mooy. I am a bit of a Celtic fan myself (and Hibs) and would love to see him strut his stuff in the SPL.
Adrian's books can be purchased at any good bookstore or through ebook alchemy. His new novel, Welcome to Ord City, is now available.