AT first, it looked like a master bit of kidology from Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou.

New signing Liel Abada hadn’t been included in his squad for the Champions League tie against FC Midjtylland on Tuesday night, but as the 9000 home fans started to drift into Celtic Park, his name was on their lips, and right there on the teamsheet.

As it turns out, the omission of the 19-year-old was the fault of an administrative error on UEFA’s end, but Postecoglou was only too happy to play up to the notion that his new signing wouldn’t be one of his late registrations prior to the game.

It may not only have been the FC Midtjylland players who were surprised by the impact of the Israeli winger, with the fans also buzzing with anticipation when he received the ball after a couple of early crosses that found the mark. And this before he opened the scoring and his own Celtic account with a composed finish as Danish keeper Jonas Lossl spilled Ryan Christie’s stinging shot.

Abada seems to be inspired by the faith placed in him by his manager and the support given to him by the fans rather than being overawed by it, and he is hoping to repay that backing handsomely as his Celtic career gathers pace.

“It was an unbelievable feeling to start on such a big occasion in front of the fans for Champions League qualification,” Abada told the Celtic website.

“I gained so much confidence from the manager and my team-mates. Being given that opportunity showed me that they fully trusted me.

“The training sessions I had with the team really helped me get to know the players, the manager and what the manager wants from me. It gave me an understanding of the expectations around the club.

“I had a few video sessions with the coaching staff and that really helped me understand the role they wanted me to play.

"When I arrived at Celtic Park on the bus, I was in shock with all the fans outside waiting to support us as we stepped off the bus. That was a new experience for me and I hope to make the fans proud."

He certainly did on his first start for the club, however fleeting it may have been.

With Abada playing right of the three in behind Odsonne Edouard, and Christie the other side of David Turnbull, Celtic looked full of creativity in the opening half of the game.

His link-up with a rejuvenated Christie in particular showed real signs of promise.

First, a neat exchange between Abada and Turnbull saw him centre for Christie to toe-poke off the post from close range, before he retrieved the ball and swung another beauty of a cross into the box where Christie flew through the air to head over. And of course, there was his goal, picking up Christie’s scraps off the goalkeeper.

Sadly for Abada, and for Celtic, manager Postecoglou was forced into sacrificing his attacking threat to get Dane Murray onto the pitch after Nir Bitton was needlessly sent off, just moments after his goal.

He may have gone from sliding on his knees in ecstasy in front of the celebrating fans to slumping onto the bench in a matter of minutes, but he still took enough from the experience to feel that he may be at the start of a special journey at the club.

“I was really excited at the beginning of the game," he said. "It’s a big stage and an important game for us. As soon as the game started and I got on the ball, I gained a lot of confidence.

“The fans gave me a lot of confidence and the players around me helped me settle and feel confident.

"That made me feel like I could do something special and I’m really happy I was able to help the team by scoring. To score on my debut was the best start I could ask for.

“I want to continue like this, work hard and show everyone that I’m a good player who can help the team.”

It is little wonder then that Abada joins the Celtic support in his intrigue about what Postecoglou’s team might be able to achieve against Midtjylland in the return leg on Wednesday, particularly as they will have a full complement of players on the field again.

There was plenty of evidence to suggest that simply having Abada on the pitch for a longer period will increase Celtic’s attacking threat, with the Danes struggling to contain him.

"The most important thing for me is to help the team win,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if I score, as long as the team wins, and I feel confident we can win on Wednesday.”