Ange Postecoglou will use the winter shutdown to “crack on” with strengthening Celtic’s depleted squad after seeing it stretched to its limits in recent weeks.
The Australian enjoyed spending his first Christmas morning in Glasgow with his family but says that is all the break he needs as he continues working on the job that he “loves every minute of”.
Celtic had as many as 18 first team players missing from the squad for their Boxing Day win over St Johnstone, including Callum McGregor, Jota, James Forrest and Joe Hart.
Top-scorer Kyogo Furuhashi was taken off early in the first half to have his name added to the growing list that has left the manager with only the bare bones, particularly in the forward areas.
And with vital league games and a winnable European tie coming up after the break, Postecoglou is keen to bolster his options for the title run-in.
So rather than enjoying some downtime, the 56-year-old will be working tirelessly to get new signings over the line and also utilise some rare time on the training ground to further instil his tactics on players while his medical team work on getting players back.
He said: “No breaks.
“We keep cracking on. There is plenty to do.
“We’ve been working on it for a while, knowing that we needed to strengthen the squad during January. This gives us a chance – with no games – to push along with that.
“Hopefully we get some good news in the New Year and bring some reinforcements in.
“It’s kind of been game-recovery for quite a while now. Just to be able to work with the players and work on our game and keep pushing and helping our game, it’s going to be a crucial time for us and for the players.”
The former Australia manager, who lifted the Asian Championships with the Socceroos, took charge of his 36th game as Celtic manager on Sunday and will go in to the winter shutdown with the League Cup trophy already in the cabinet.
However the first six months hasn’t been without its challenges in what has seemed like a whirlwind start to life in Scotland.
But he did manage to fit in some personal downtime enjoying Christmas morning with his family.
He said: “I’ve got some young ones who were causing chaos with their gifts from Father Christmas.
“And that was great.
“But, look, I love what I do. I don’t need to switch off. It’s fine.
“I’ve really enjoyed the first six months, as challenging as it has been. I’ve enjoyed every minute of it and I know there are massive challenges ahead so I’m looking forward to that.
“I’ve got plenty of energy. We’ll have plenty of time to switch off mate when I’m old and grey.”