Celtic finally became Scottish Premiership champions once again at Tannadice on Wednesday night as they earned the solitary point required to seal their 52nd top-flight title.
It may be one of the most unexpected title wins in their history considering where they were last summer, but it’s hard for anyone to say that they don’t deserve it for their incredible consistency.
They are currently on an unbeaten league run of 31 games dating back to September when they lost to Livingston, which shows quite the turnaround under Ange Postecoglou.
Included in the long unbeaten run are back-to-back Old Firm wins, which has been the key difference between being champions and not. Some say Old Firm games don’t usually decide the destination of the title, but on this occasion they did and that was one of the main reasons why Celtic prevailed.
They have been relentless in their pursuit of success and the winning mentality instilled by Postecoglou has been evident for a long time. His players speak in glowing terms about his attention to detail, simplifying it tactically for everyone and the demands he puts on them every single day.
It’s not just the league title that Celtic are celebrating because they cleaned up at the end of season Scottish Players’ Football Association awards.
Postecoglou got the vote from his fellow managers, captain Callum McGregor claimed the Player of the Year prize and Liel Abada, in his first season in Scotland, received the Young Player of the Year gong. That signifies how good Celtic have been this season and their fellow professionals agree.
The sign of a top manager is not simply someone able to get results but also being able to incorporate a clear philosophy on the team that is evident for all to see.
Celtic under Postecoglou have adopted a high aggressive press, which smothers the opposition and forces them to turnover possession regularly.
It means Celtic are on the front foot and dominant with the ball, making it very hard for teams, particularly in Scotland, to keep up with them.
Postecoglou said when he arrived that his goal was to play fast, attacking football that would excite people and he’s delivered on his promise.
Another impressive trait of Postecoglou’s is his ability to make players better.
One of the names that jumps out is Tony Ralston, who was only given a contract extension last summer because Celtic were low in numbers.
Under the Aussie’s guidance, Ralston has been transformed and is having the best spell of his career. Joe Hart is another who had become a forgotten man, wasting away at Spurs. Postecoglou pulled him from obscurity and Hart has been a vital cog in Celtic having the best defensive record in the Premiership.
So when you piece that all together, it is clear Postecoglou has been an excellent addition for Celtic and it’s no surprise they are already trying to extend his contract beyond the one-year rolling one he is on.
When Scott Brown decided to leave the club at the end of last season, McGregor was the obvious choice to replace the departing captain, however plenty wondered if he had the presence to succeed in such a demanding role.
Being handed the captain’s armband inspires some players and it frightens others.
Judging by McGregor’s performances this season, it’s the former as he’s taken parts of his game to a new level.
He’s added an edge to his game vocally with his demands on team-mates, he’s thrived under the responsibility and he’s grown as a player.
At a club like Celtic, as captain the number of trophies you lift defines you and privately McGregor will be relieved that in his first season he’s managed to hold aloft two out of three domestic trophies. They will give him a lot of satisfaction personally and it will give him a great boost heading into next season.
Abada was an unknown 18-year-old when Celtic paid over £3m for him back in July. It seemed a big financial outlay at the time for a player with just potential but also at a time when Celtic required more established players for the Postecoglou rebuild.
Fast forward 10 months, though, and Abada has fully justified the fee paid because he’s shown glimpses of what his future holds with a big contribution to Celtic’s success this season.
Goals and assists have been a regular occurrence for the little Israeli and he, like a lot of other Celtic players, has improved under the leadership of Postecoglou.
A lot of wide players nowadays think being involved in the build-up play of an attack is enough but Abada has a great instinct for goal and has that uncanny knack of getting in at the back post when it matters. Celtic will rightly feel if his progression continues in years to come, they could get a healthy return on their investment.
So as Celtic quite rightly get ready to hold aloft the Scottish Premiership trophy they relinquished to Rangers last season, the meticulous Postecoglou will no doubt already have his eyes on next season.
He knows full well Celtic will have a target on their back so rather than sitting back and enjoying the success he will be planning to do it all over again. Both Celtic and Rangers are in a good place so as always there will be fireworks in the future.