The beginning of Carl Starfelt’s career was a bit of a whirlwind but the Swedish defender was always confident he would make an impact at Celtic.
There was a huge gap left in the Celtic defence last summer which was further highlighted when the club was dumped out the qualifiers of the Champions league in extra-time by FC Midtjylland with a back four which finished the match consisting of Anthony Ralston, Stephen Welsh, Dane Murray and Adam Montgomery.
With Kristoffer Ajer leaving the club for a reported £13.5 million, it was crucial that spent some of the sum wisely on a centre back which evidently came in the form of Swedish international, Carl Starfelt.
Due to the rules around Covid isolation at the time, the former Rubin Kazan player had to serve a period of isolation before linking up with his new teammates.
“It was a weird time, usually you have some time to prepare but I had come from being in isolation in London for 10 days and was a bit injured so I didn’t train in a long time,” said Starfelt speaking to the Celtic View.
“Then I had one training session and was thrown right into it, so it was something different, but I felt like I knew that from the start that it would take time to settle in.
“I had the confidence that it would come and I would fit the system well once I got things, so for me, it wasn’t a problem.”
After completing his days in isolation, the defender was thrown into the opening game of the season against Hearts at Tynecastle alongside Nir Bitton in defence. A disappointing result for the Hoops on the night, but it wouldn’t be long until Starfelt’s new defensive partner would arrive from Tottenham Hotspur.
The partnership between Starfelt and Carter-Vickers was imperative to Celtic’s success last season with the manager having a clear way of playing football. In the past he has spoken about players behind the attackers giving a platform for the creative players to go and work their magic.
In his own game, the 27 year-old believes he has developed under Ange Postecoglou saying, “I have developed a lot, especially on the ball. You also need another mentality here because there’s a need to win every game.”
This current Celtic side are certainly in that form of winning matches. Starfelt was a crucial player under Ange last season and it is exciting to see what is to come as the the team are far more settled now heading in to this season and also have that vital experience of knowing what it takes to be champions.