Ange Postecoglou knows his Celtic side face a ‘must-win’ Champions League match against Shakhtar Donetsk and has faith that goals will come if the team continues playing as it has been.
The Scottish champions have only one point from their first four games in the group stage but attacking performances have created a number of chances that could have led to much better outcomes.
While progress in the top competition is beyond Celtic, the consolation of a place in the Europa League still exists, though results elsewhere would have to go in their favour and they would have to beat Shakhtar and draw against Real Madrid.
Postecoglou, who has maintained that he won’t dramatically change his style of play, believes the approach will pay off.
He said.“In the context of us continuing in Europe, it’s a must-win game and our ambition is to try and achieve that and keep us alive.
“It’s not that because I think we deserve something you automatically get it or you feel like you’re owed something.
“My thought process around this whole thing is that if you keep putting yourself in that position of creating chances then eventually you get your rewards and that’s the key for us.
“We have to tackle it in the same manner, particularly here at home, put pressure on the opposition and if we create the same number of chances then it’s about converting them. From my perspective, it’s a lot better being in that sort of situation rather than trying to figure out how to create chances to try and score goals.”
Reflecting on the campaign so far, he highlighted the difference from domestic football not just in quality of opponent but in how that changes the physical demands on his players.
He said: “European football in general we found last season in the Europa League the physical demands are greater than the Premiership because for the most part of Premiership games even though we try and play high tempo we have a lot of control of the games which means we’re not doing too much running back towards our goal.
“But you’re playing against better opposition and it’s more of a challenge for us to maintain that tempo when you don’t have the ball.
“Within that context I think physically, in all the games, we’ve performed really well but the difficulty then is recovery and back up for your next game when they’re so close together.”
The Celtic boss revealed that David Turnbull will be part of his squad for Tuesday’s game but that it will come too early for Jota and David Turnbull.
“The Bull’s okay – Dave Turnbull is all right,” he said. “Carl is back in training, which is great.
“It will be too early tomorrow but the idea is to get him back into training over the next few days and see how it goes.
“Jota has had his last rehab session today so I expect him to start training with us after tomorrow’s game and be available for the weekend.”