ANGE Postecoglou has admitted that he sees Cameron Carter-Vickers, the Spurs centre half who has joined Celtic on loan this season, as being integral to his long-term plans for the Parkhead club and revealed officials will be speaking to the player about his future in the coming weeks.

United States internationalist Carter-Vickers has firmly established himself in Postecoglou’s first team since moving to Scotland on the final day of the summer transfer window back in August.

The 23-year-old has impressed supporters of the Glasgow giants with his committed and intelligent displays both at home and abroad and many are keen to see him to sign a permanent deal and remain in the East End.

The defender, who has played for no fewer than seven different clubs in the past four years, is out of contract at his parent club in 18 months’ time.

Postecoglou declined to reveal how much it will cost to trigger a release clause in his agreement with Spurs – figures ranging between £2.5m and £10m have been mentioned.

But the Greek-Australian coach, whose team take on St Johnstone in a cinch Premiership match at McDiarmid Park this afternoon, did confess that he is eager to see Carter-Vickers stay at Celtic beyond the 2021/22 campaign.

“He has become an important part of our team” he said. “Even though he is a young guy you just have to look at his playing experience. He has had three solid years playing in the Championship playing at good, strong clubs.

“The Championship in England is a really tough competition, you don’t get through that without having some real quality in you. I looked at his track record and I knew we would be getting somebody with more experience than his age would suggest. 

“That’s what’s proven to be. The beauty of that is he is only going to get better. And he wants that. He works hard every day, looks after himself and wants to be the best footballer he can be. I knew what I was getting, but it has turned out to be a real good move.” 

Postecoglou added: “I wouldn’t have brought him in if I thought it was just a short-term thing. 

“All the players we have brought in we have done so with some thought around building a team. Building a team means more than just 12 months. But as I said a lot of that depends on the player himself. 

“Those discussions will happen over the next couple of months. I don’t speak to players about that. People will be well aware that our game schedule has meant that the focus has been on performances, playing well and getting the job done. There is a time and a place for that stuff.

“January gives us an opportunity to look at our squad again. We can have a think about what we want to do in this window and the windows beyond.  Part of that discussion will be around players we have on loan and seeing what decisions we want to make on them. 

“A lot of that will depend on the players themselves, if they are happy and want to stay here. We will get round to those discussions.” 

Postecoglou revealed that he would have liked to have signed Carter-Vickers permanently in the summer, but had been unable to because of how late in the transfer window Celtic approached Spurs.

“It was close because there were a few moving parts,” he said. “There were some players we needed to move on at the time. People forget that Odsonne (Edouard) and Ryan (Christie) didn’t leave until late in the piece so there was a helluva lot of moving parts. 

“Thankfully for us we were able to get Cameron over the line at the last minute. It was a bit of a leap of faith for him because he didn’t have a lot of time to think about it. But I’m sure he would say now that it has been a great move for him. And it’s been a great move for the club. 

“We didn’t have the time to do anything else. Like I said, it was really late in the piece and the logical thing for all parties was to do a loan or we wouldn’t have got the deal done.”