CELTIC’S 2020/21 season – which saw manager Neil Lennon leave the club in February – was clearly far from a success.
After nine consecutive titles, the Bhoys were clear favourites to win the league for a record tenth time in a row, however, their lack of consistency saw them miss out on their 52nd title. Nonetheless, they gave it a fight and had some high moments and memorable wins in the meantime.
Join us as we look at some of the most important triumphs in the 2020/21 season.
Dundee United vs Celtic (0-1)
After a promising start to the league, with a comfortable win over Hamilton Academical, the Bhoys had been unable to beat Kilmarnock at Rugby Park where they split points. Going into their second consecutive away match, Celtic was 4th in the general standing and was seeking to move up the table. Additionally, the Hoops needed to come out with a win before their second qualifying round for the Champions League against Ferencvaros.
Unfortunately, Celtic would go on to be knocked off the competition and play in the Europa League, where they only managed to win one game, against Lille. In the current season, reigning Ligue 1 champions Lille are playing in the top club competition in Europe and according to the latest Champions League winner odds they are priced to win the competition at odds of 200/1 after being picked to face Chelsea in the Round of 16.
The Celts visited Tannadice Park to face Dundee United, after their recent promotion to the Premiership. While Celtic dominated the first half and had five shots on target, with Edouard hitting the bar once, they failed to convert their attempts. In the second half, they had less possession but were always more dangerous in the attack than the home side. With 10 minutes to play, this looked like a certain draw. But then, in his league debut for Celtic, the summer transfer Albian Ajeti scored the winning goal with only seven minutes left on the clock.
While the result may seem unconvincing, the victory gave the squad confidence they needed and marked the first of seven consecutive wins in the league.
St Johnstone vs Celtic (0-2)
After six victories in a row in the Premiership, Celtic were fiercely chasing Rangers. Before receiving their rivals at Celtic Park, they needed to secure one more victory against 9th place St Johnstone. Celtic were clear favourites, as the Saints had failed to win any of their last three games.
The first half saw both teams create few chances to score, with the Hoops only having one shot on target. The second 45 minutes weren’t much better as the Bhoys had difficulty reaching the goal. As the clock hit the 90 minute mark, the alarm bells were ringing. But then, following a perfect cross from Hatem Abd Elhamed, Leigh Griffiths, who joined Dundee on loan in 2021, made it 1-0 to Celtic. That would’ve been enough to secure the three points, but three minutes later Patryk Klimala doubled the score. Not one of the best performances of the season, but certainly one of the most thrilling.
Celtic vs Dundee United (3-0)
In the last game before the end of the year, Celtic were holding firmly to 2nd place. With the first half of the Premiership coming to an end, they had only lost once, but their four draws were the result of a bumpy run from October to early December.
On December 30, Dundee United visited Glasgow, before another major derby for Celtic. In what was one of the best performances of the entire season, Lennon’s men displayed some of their top football, starting with an early goal from Ismaila Soro, which was followed by a second goal near halftime.
The second half started on the wrong foot as Christopher Jullien sustained a knee injury after colliding into the post, resulting in a long-term injury that has lasted for almost a year. Before the final whistle, the Bhoys upped their advantage again, this time it was the league’s top scorer Odsonne Edouard who scored, saying goodbye to 2020 with a very positive performance.
While these are some of the key victories in Celtic’s 2020/21 run, their 6-0 win over Livingston or their 2-1 comeback versus St Johnstone are also some other memorable moments to keep in mind.