When cult star Jorge Cadete was netting goals for Tommy Burns’ side in 1996-97, no Portuguese player had played for Celtic.
Jota states that he cannot wait to experience the atmosphere at Celtic since he was intrigued by many games that aired on television while he was growing up.
When Jorge Cadete was at Celtic, Jota hadn’t even been born yet.
In an interview after his loan move, he said:
“Ah Jorge Cadete .. 30 goals in 37 games!
“Of course he is a big hero back home.
“He did very well at Celtic, his statistics are amazing. I know that Celtic fans always remember him for that.
“But I don’t think about trying to be someone else.
“Every player has his past and I’m working every day to have my time.
“I want to make my own story at Celtic and be a success here myself.
“There’s healthy competition for places and it’s good to have such talented, competitive players. We learn every single day and get better every day. That’s the aim of football players to get better.
“I’m confident that I will learn with them. I can help them and they will help me.
“At the end of the day the most important thing is to win games as a group and to win titles.”
Regarding Celtic Park, he noted:
“Paradise isn’t it? Welcome to Paradise!
“I’m really looking forward to playing here. I have seen a lot of Celtic matches in the last few years against big European clubs.
“I have seen PSG, Barcelona and these type of teams play at Celtic Park.
“I always thought there was something special about that place. Like a different atmosphere.
“I might not be able to predict the future but watching those games I wanted to feel that atmosphere.
“It’s the best thing that could happen at this stage of my career.
“There’s a funny story, actually. When I was younger at Benfica, I think I was 11 or 12 years old, I went to watch Benfica play in the Champions League and I changed scarves with a Celtic fan.
“I still have it at home – green and white – and since then I have always remembered the club and paid attention to what they are doing.”
The wide winger dismissed the claim that things have not worked out at Benfica — instead favoring to emphasize his efforts to start the week at home against Ross County to push for a place in Postecoglou’s team.
He said: “Things worked fine. I am here at Celtic. Things are better than perfect.
“Once I knew about (Celtic’s interest) I just wanted to come. I knew it was the right place to be. I’m so happy everything got solved and now I’m here I just want to play.
“It’s the right place because of the name, the history and the things Celtic have achieved in the past and the type of football the club is playing right now.
“It’s suits me and I just want to learn as much as possible off the coach and my team mates. To develop new skills and new ways of playing.
“The way the manager wants to play, the way the team is set up, it’s an aggressive, dynamic mentality and he wants the team to attack and score as many goals as we can. That was a big trigger for me to come here.
“I knew the manager had a story with the national team in Australia. I had heard good things about him. I want to be ready for everything as soon as I can.
“I’m not thinking about Europe yet. There’s a match before then against Ross County. I will be ready whenever the coach says so.
“I just want to play as soon as possible but not look too far ahead. Everything will work out.
“My experiences in the Champions League and Europa League with Benfica will help, for sure.
“But things will be different at Celtic, we will play another type of game and I need to adapt as quickly as I can and work hard with the guys, win as much as we can.”
Ange provides injury report and welcomes home Scottish Cup draw
Ange Postecoglou got the job done against Alloa Athletic in the Scottish Cup fourth round on Saturday.
A 2-1 win against League One side ensured advancement to the showpiece final at Hampden Park later this season.
The goal was to get through, but despite accomplishing that goal, injuries forced Callum McGregor and Yosuke Ideguchi to leave the Indodrill Stadium.
Ange Postecoglou spoke exclusively to Celtic TV about the duo’s fitness and the fifth round, which includes a match versus Raith Rovers at Celtic Park.
The Celtic manager said: “Callum is better today. He wasn’t in great shape after the game but I’ve exchanged messages with him and he feels a bit better, which is great.
“Knowing the type of character Callum is, for him to come off was something significant. Hopefully, his recovery doesn’t take too long.
“Yosuke is not great. I think I said after the game it didn’t look too serious but it’s still pretty painful now.
“I was optimistic it wouldn’t be too bad, but as everyone saw in the footage it was a tackle that shouldn’t have happened and should have been addressed on the day.
“It was a terrible tackle and one he hasn’t come of too well and will be missing for a little bit as well.
“The pitch wasn’t great in the last round against Alloa and they’re the type of things you want to avoid. The fact we’re at home in front of our supporters and on our pitch, I think is a good advantage.”
On the plus side, the team put in a strong performance on Saturday, led by Giorgos Giakoumakis, who scored his second goal for the green and white Hoops.
“It was good for him and more important it was good to get 90 minutes,” he said. “He’s had an interrupted first half of the year but he’s worked awfully hard.
“We gave most of the guys a week off in between games but he stayed at Lennoxtown with a few other boys and put in the work.
“He got through the 90 minutes pretty strong and scored his goal, so it’s a good foundation for him.”
Celtic’s brilliant player could leave before transfer deadline
Celtic’s Mikey Johnston might be on the move in the last week of the transfer market as Aberdeen look for a loan deal.
Aberdeen manager Stephen Glass, according to the Daily Record, is desperate to add additional attacking alternatives.
The Dons now want to loan Johnston out for the remainder of the season, which might be beneficial to all parties involved.
This season, Johnston has appeared in 12 Scottish Premiership matches but has only played 90 minutes twice.
With loanee Jota excelling in from the left-wing, Ange Postecoglou hasn’t given Johnston a big role this season.
A new signing has been made. Daizen Maeda can also play on the left, Johnston may find it difficult to break into the first squad if he stays at Celtic.
Johnston, like Ryan Christie in 2017, may be able to play frequently and really kick on if he moves to Aberdeen.
It’s worth noting that former Celtics star Scott Brown is said to have given Johnston a great endorsement.
Brown and Johnston were teammates at Celtic, and with Brown now assisting Stephen Glass as a coach in addition to his playing duties, Johnston has come highly recommended.
Celtic are currently dealing with a number of injuries, so Postecoglou may be able to postpone Johnston’s departure until the very last minute.
With his 23rd birthday approaching in April, Johnston may have to consider leaving Celtic for good.
Although 11 goals and 10 assists in 77 matches isn’t bad, it’s difficult to envisage him as a starting player for the Bhoys.
Callum McGregor has described Johnston as “sensational” and a “great talent,” but he has been plagued by injuries, particularly this season.
Johnston is a quick and crafty player with a lot of potential, but he may need some time away from Celtic — either on loan or permanently – to fully realize it.
Celtic closing in on deal to sign Matt O’Riley
Ange Postecoglou’s side has made moves to make additions to the Celts’ squad, and the latest they have their eyes on is English third-tier midfielder, Matt O’Riley of MK Dons.
The 21-year-old Englishman is reportedly wanted by both Blackburn Rovers and his former coach, Chris Martin’s current side, Swansea City.
As reported by The Athletic, Celtic is set on signing the midfielder on a 1.5 million pound deal by the end of the week, which will beat competition not just from England, but Europe.
Matt O’Riley, who sits ninth in goals and assists in England’s League One, was reportedly eyed by the Gunners and the Citizens. This, his speed and the ability to play anywhere in the midfield, will make him a great signing for Ange.
O’Rilley, the EFL player of the month in November last year, was on Denmark and Norway’s watch lists earlier this month (eligible from his mother’s side), a clear indication of his potential.
Since Swansea almost have Monchengladbach’s winger, Hannes Wolf, whom Celtic supposedly wanted on loan terms, Ange has a bigger chance to gain payback in O’Riley.
The youngster, if signed by Celtic, will see Fulham pocket some good money from their sell-on clause with his current side, but the contributions he has made since joining are probably worth every cent.
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