PAT BONNER has seen it all at Celtic, from the highs and lows of his long playing career at the club through the years of punditry that has followed, so he is cautious of making hyperbolic statements.

When he assesses Ange Postecoglou’s start as manager as ‘remarkable’ then, it makes the ears prick up a little.

That is how the former Celtic keeper sees the impact of Postecoglou since his arrival as manager though, particularly in the context of the situation he inherited when he landed in Glasgow from Japan in mid-June.

The Australian has managed to bleed 12 players into the club while moving on several unhappy players in the process, revitalised the Celtic careers of some others, and ultimately moulded a squad that has landed the League Cup and been able to stay on the coattails of Rangers at the top of the Premiership.

That feat has hugely impressed Bonner, and he is excited at what may be to come in the near future if Postecoglou can further strengthen his squad in the January transfer window.

“I think they have done really well with the manager in terms of what he’s done,” Bonner said.

“He seems to handle a lot of it himself, which I have found perhaps the biggest surprise for a lot of us.

“He seems to be something of a father figure. He was talking about the young lad Joey Dawson after the game at St Johnstone and was talking about how the B Team plays in the same way.

“So, that means he has a big influence throughout the club, which is a big thing to do when you consider where he’s come from and so on.

“He’s taken an awful lot on his shoulders. He’s had to deal with everything and he’s done it. He hasn’t complained about it and he’s got on with it – all of those type of things.

“I think, from where they were to where they are now, is remarkable.

“They are also playing good football. That’s the other point. It’s not as if they are scraping through. They are playing decent football.

“Yes, maybe there’s games that they could finish off better. The issue is always going to be the strikers if Kyogo isn’t fit.

“He was quite positive about him at the end of the game against to Johnstone. He didn’t think there was too much in it.

“If he could get a couple of windows behind him and bringing in few more players … if he gets that and it keeps that momentum well, I think he’ll be doing really well.

“I could be giving him probably an eight out of 10 at this moment.”

One of the key factors in Postecoglou’s positive start to life at Celtic, in Bonner’s view, is the way in which he has been able to not only get the players to buy into his philosophy, but also the supporters.

“That’s a good thing,” he said. “He’s got a great relationship in a very short time with the support which is fairly unique as he’s only been in the door six or seven months.

“Considering the way the fans were at the end of last season, for someone to come in and make that almost unique [relationship] over such a short period of time has been dramatic.

“I think the fans buy into the way the team are playing. They are on the front foot all the time – there’s not a game where it’s slow and ponderous.

“Even on the counter attack, you could see on Sunday that as soon as he goalkeeper gets the ball he wants to start an attack quickly. I think that suits the DNA of Celtic.”

Bonner says it was important too though that the faith placed in Postecoglou by fans and players alike began to be vindicated with the League Cup triumph.

“Winning the first trophy is massive for any Celtic manager,” he said. “If they hadn’t won it against Hibs, then it would have been a big disappointment. We’d then be saying ‘he’s doing okay but …’

“However, once you get that trophy in the cabinet and are still in touch and challenging in the league, the picture looks different.

“Okay, [last] midweek against St Mirren was a bit disappointing as the gap opened a bit. That made Sunday so important. They won the game and now they can try to get some new players in.”

The ultimate vindication of course would come if Postecoglou can overhaul the six-point gap to Rangers and land what had looked a remarkably unlikely league title at the outset of the campaign.

“Listen, when you win a title, no matter when it is, it’s always a good one to win,” said Bonner.

“It’s very hard to compare and contrast. But to get them challenging and now winning a trophy, I think that’s a remarkable situation from where they were.”