For a long time, it looked like Celtic were headed for a famous win away in Germany against Bayer Leverkusen and would keep their Europa League knockout phase hopes alive as well. Ultimately though, it appeared that Ange Postecoglou’s side just did not have enough in the tank. They conceded twice after the 80th minute mark and the game ended 3-2 in favour of the Bundesliga giants.
On the other hand, Real Betis’ win over Ferencvaros meant that Celtic’s hopes of making it to the Europa League knockout stage are over and instead, they will be heading to the Europa Conference League when the group stage comes to an end. That is European football to look forward to at the end of the day.
One of the things that did not work out for Celtic against Bayer Leverkusen were their substitutions and many will question Postecoglou’s decisions regarding them.
“Guys coming on didn’t have the impact we wanted because we had some opportunities to create something ourselves and our decision making wasn’t great and we allowed the pressure to build up on us.”
The Celtic substitutions just didn’t work out
It is safe to say that the Celtic substitutes didn’t have the desired effect. Kyogo, Jota, James Forrest and Nir Bitton came off for Liel Abada, Mikey Johnston, Albian Ajeti and James McCarthy.
Out of the four coming on, only Abada has played regular football this season and even he has looked a bit out of form in recent weeks.
This just goes on to show the lack of depth at Celtic right now though and why they need to strengthen further when the January transfer window opens.
Postecoglou could have done with more options on the bench on this occasion and who knows what the result of this could have turned out to be if that was the case.