There was so much to cover in yesterday’s win over Kilmarnock it is probably best if we start with how the day ended. Derek McInnes’s feeble post-match contribution that Hyeongyu Oh should have received a red, not a yellow card, for a high boot, was a classic defective move.
This game was a farce from the outset as McInnes tactics failed to give his team any chance of competing in the game. On 31 minutes he made two substitutions which filled some of the gaps in his midfield. By then, the score was 0-4, soon even Callum McGregor slipped into casual mode. Celtic are miles stronger than anyone else in the league and can have no complaints when opponents sit in and defend. We can, however, expect them to be tactically ready for the game. Kilmarnock were not.
They only retain a chance of avoiding relegation due to their plastic pitch, which has earned them 26 of their 28 points – their 2 points away from home are 9 fewer than the second worst away team in the league. They are untutored at how to play on grass and no amount of loose talk from Derek McInnes can hide this fact.
Kyogo exploited all that empty space in the middle of the park, with a solo effort that put his side ahead before his team-mates broke sweat. A crisp passing move culminated in Alistair Johnston pitching a cross for Daizen Madea to head home, before a Matt O’Riley double completed the champions’ scoring for the day.
The day started with Ange Postecoglou dropping Jota and Cameron Carter-Vickers from the squad due to the pitch. With a 12-point lead this was the correct decision, but I am never comfortable with the mental sign players get when others are rested. It means ‘this game is less important that those to come’, which is correct, but often induces a lack of intensity. Celtic got the job done before slipping into second gear.
A great season is drawing to a close with Celtic looking ever-stronger.