Despite Celtic’s worst start to a league season in 23 years, fans are getting excited, according to ex-midfielder Stiliyan Petrov. Give coach Ange Postecoglou time
Parkhead’s side suffered a sixth away defeat on Sunday to leave Celtic in sixth place in the Cinch Premiership table.
Postecoglou’s team have lost all three away league games, but the run without a home win goes back seven months, when Neil Lennon was in charge and before John Kennedy’s extended stint as supervisor.
Celtic made twelve new signings in the summer and Postecoglou had to do without skipper Callum McGregor, top scorer Kyogo Furuhashi and newcomer Giorgos Giakoumakis in the 1-0 defeat at Livingston.
With vacancies in the positions of chief executive and chief recruitment adding to change, Petrov believes a slow start to this season has been inevitable.
“Everyone is talking about the away form,” he told Sky Sports News. “It’s just a transition period that they have to go through.
“Ange finds it very difficult to bring his best team onto the pitch, it is very difficult for him to choose his best players.
“It’s going to take time. It’s a transition everyone expected.
“I think the fans are pretty happy with what’s going on on the pitch and it’s just one of those phases that they have to go through.
“The way the coach Celtic wants to play is very difficult. There are a lot of details that need to be worked out.
“He always stresses that he loves to go forward and score goals, but they have a lot of new players behind them and they need time to develop.
“There’s a lot to do on the pitch, he knows that and he talks about it. He’s very calm and knows that the process takes time.”
Petrov signed to Celtic in the early days of John Barnes’ administration in 1999, helping the new coach to 12 wins in his first 13 competitive games.
But Barnes was gone in mid-February 2000 after a Scottish Cup defeat to Inverness that took three league games to the top without a win.
On being warned that managerial time in Glasgow is not a luxury, Petrov said on a John Hartson Foundation golf day, “I believe when the new manager with everything on the board was appointed with the chief executive.” and football director, I think everyone understands, especially the fans, that the club is going through a change, a transition that takes time, needs patience.
“I know you emphasized that there is no time if you don’t win, but I think the Celtic fans are quite ready to give this manager time and at the end of the season they will analyze it.”