Johansen delights in dream debut

  • Last Updated: February 3 2014, 9:09 GMT

Celtic new boy Stefan Johansen was delighted with his first start for the Hoops in their 1-0 home win over St Mirren.

Stefan Johansen: Approaching full fitness
Stefan Johansen: Approaching full fitness

Kris Commons' 22nd goal of the season after five minutes was enough to secure another three points for the Scottish Premiership champions, but it was the recent signing from Stromsgodset that caught the eye with a man-of-the-match performance in the Celtic midfield.

His efforts delighted manager Neil Lennon, who described his performance as one of the best debuts he had seen in his time at the club.

"It was good," Johansen said. "I haven't played that much since November 15, I've just had two sub (appearances) here and one reserve game, so I'm starting to get match-fit now and to get a full game was good for me.

"The last five minutes I got tired and probably we will dominate the game more (when I'm match-fit).

"I'm the kind of player who likes to have the ball and you do it better when you're not tired.

"But it went okay for me, we got a win and a clean sheet and I'm happy with that but I need to work even harder to be in the first team."

The Norway international hopes he can allay any fears that the Celtic support may have over their midfield options now that Joe Ledley has left Parkhead for Crystal Palace.

"I think it was bad that Joe did leave the club," Johansen said.

"Obviously he was a fantastic player. I could have learned a lot off him, but that's how football is, players come and players leave and you just have to make the best of what you have."

Johansen also thanked the supporters for the part they played in his dream debut.

"This is what I came to Celtic for," he said. "To win games, to play in the first team, and of course, the fans.

"I think I've got off to a very good start with them at Celtic and I'm happy. I want to say thank you to them because it means a lot."


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