The Livingston draw will rankle with the majority of Celtic fans over the international break, but in truth the team deserved that luxury.
Such has been their form since returning from the last two-week break, they “earned” that point in a way. Celtic have been blowing away the opposition for fun in Scotland recently. Finally for supporters, they now lead the way at the top of the table.
Forget the fact Rangers narrowed the gap to two points with their hammering of Motherwell. This has been a period of success for Celtic.
Reaching the Betfred Cup final was terrific for the club. Added to that, a big European performance against RB Leipzig puts them right back into the hunt for Europa League qualification. Toppling Hearts and reaching the summit of the Premiership was the icing on the cake.
It doesn’t matter, in the end, how many points by which Celtic lead the way. It’s only important for supporters that they are.
It all started with that Betfred Cup semi-final defeat of Hearts. The 3-0 success saw the rise to prominence of the likes of Ryan Christie and Scott Sinclair. Both men have been putting in fine displays for several weeks now, and deserve huge praise.
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There was, of course, the incredible 6-0 annihilation of St Johnstone beforehand also. A 5-0 rout of lowly Dundee also took place at Dens Park with the Hoops looking like they were back to their best.
Key players thriving once more
Christie, Sinclair, Callum McGregor, and Odsonne Edouard are thriving at the moment. They all continued their sensational form in the 5-0 hammering of Hearts at Celtic Park. Effectively, that was the game Celtic secured their place at the top of the table.
These maulings and the return to form of several key stars are what earned Celtic their Livingston draw. They afforded themselves that leeway to stumble in West Lothian, despite the fact that nobody wanted them to.
It wasn’t ideal for Celtic to end such an impressive run of results with that 0-0 draw. Livi, however, battled aggressively in the midfield and took advantage of Celtic’s tiredness.
What’s made this run all the more impressive is that it’s largely been the same XI producing each week. Rodgers appears to have a settled side in place, even if the Livi draw showed just how much Scott Brown can be missed.
His players have been running through brick walls for him recently, and they have their rewards. The goal upon returning will be to get back on the horse and increase the gap at the top of the table.
That, combined with Europa League qualification and a Betfred Cup before the Winter break, would be yet another highly successful period of games.
That has to be the goal at this point. Fans, however, shouldn’t feel too panicky after the Livi draw. Celtic earned the right for some leeway, and they’ve used it.