Celtic made it six wins in a row in all competitions since the winter break with a 4-0 win over Motherwell at Fir Park.
The goals came from the deadly strike duo of Leigh Griffiths and Odsonne Edouard, who continued their excellent run of form.
Callum McGregor sealed the win with 15 minutes to go with a superb volleyed finish, before a trademark Edouard free-kick made it 4-0 late on.
Here are three things we learned as Celtic’s excellent run of form continued:
Goal and assist proves key man’s worth once more
Callum McGregor is one of the players that is on Neil Lennon’s team sheet each week. As Lennon said as quoted by Celtic TV, “Callum’s just a metronome”, in other words, he is the player that makes the team tick over.
After a quiet first-half by his standards, McGregor burst in life in the second-half. He pass set-up Leigh Griffiths to put Celtic further ahead in the game, then his volleyed finish for Celtic’s third goal has to go down as one of the goals of the season.
That sums up all that is good about the player, at times he is quiet, but he can all of a sudden spring into life and make a huge impact on the game.
McGregor seems to be playing some of his best football of the season in recent weeks. Since the Hoops returned from the winter break, he has scored three goals and has provided four assists.
That is testament to his ability as a player, and perhaps also to the 3-5-2 formation that is playing to his strengths.
McGregor is thriving for Celtic, and as the season goes on he will hopefully become even more influential.
Formation change has transformed team
Celtic’s formation change to a 3-5-2 has transformed the team.
The work that the team has put in during the winter break in Dubai has paid off as Celtic have plenty of confidence, which is a marked difference from the display the Hoops put in against Rangers before the winter break.
The formation change suits Celtic’s attacking play, and the goals have followed as a result.
In the last three games, the Hoops have scored 11 goals, and the formation change has contributed to that. Neil Lennon deserves credit for taking the risk and moving to a 3-5-2, after playing a 4-3-3 so long.
There was no guarantee that the formation change would work, and it could have been seen as a risk, as the Hoops have played with one striker and four at the back for so long. But it is working superbly so far.
Strike partnership continues to thrive
Neil Lennon’s decision to play Odsonne Edouard and Leigh Griffiths as a strike partnership continues to pay dividends for the Hoops.
Both players found the back of the net, with good finishes, Edouard’s free-kick in particular was a fine goal.
However, what will really delight Neil Lennon is the link-up play between the pair.
One moment in particular summed up the relationship between the players. A Griffiths back heel found Edouard in acres of space. His pass put through Olivier Ntcham, who somehow managed to put the ball over the bar when it was easier to score.
That miss was a mild irritation, but Griffiths and Edouard’s partnership gets better and better.