Player Ratings: St Johnstone 0-1 Celtic

By David Walton

March 1, 2020

Celtic progressed to the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup thanks to a wonderful late goal from Ryan Christie.

The attacker’s whipped delivery missed everyone and went into the far corner. It initially looked like it had come off Christopher Jullien, but the goal was given to Christie.

It was a tough affair at McDiarmid Park, with many players off for much of the game. However, after facing Copenhagen on Thursday night, it was totally understandable.

And here, we take a look at the player ratings for the game, with all three centre-backs putting in brilliant individual performances.

Fraser Forster – 7

Deserves better than an average score. Made a good stop to deny Drey Wright in the first half and tipped some dangerous balls over the crossbar. Good ball-handling throughout.

Nir Bitton – 8

A fine return to the team from Nir here. Was commanding throughout the game and got Celtic out of some tight situations with composure and good ball-control. His passing was also smooth and tidy. A contender to stay in the team for sure.

Christopher Jullien – 8

Celtic defender Christopher Jullien (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Another dominant performance from the big man here. Not much got past him as he did his best to keep Stevie May quiet. His passing was also a marked improvement this afternoon.

Kristoffer Ajer – 8

Bounced back from Copenhagen with a terrific individual performance at McDiarmid. Timed his challenges to perfection and was more than up for the battle with Callum Hendry. Part of a solid defence today and put is body where it hurt.

James Forrest – 7

Our main attacking threat. Always looked to take Scott Tanser on, but it became a little predictable in the second half. Got some dangerous balls across. A lot more dangerous here than against Copenhagen.

Callum McGregor – 6

Wasn’t in the game anywhere near as much as he would’ve liked. Energetic early on but fairly anonymous since then. Missed a big chance in the first 45 and was always willing to receive the ball. Impact was minimal.

Scott Brown – 6

Scott Brown and Greg Taylor (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Same as McGregor. Difficult conditions to dominate the midfield in but Brown didn’t really manage it this afternoon. Player in front of the back four but just doesn’t look 100% at the moment.

Ryan Christie – 7

His first-half performance was more of a 5 with nothing coming off for him in the final third. Started to get more joy in providing forward passes in the second to take his score up a notch. Missed two big second-half chances before THAT moment came. Wonderful ball in and justified his stay on the pitch.

Greg Taylor – 5

Too hesitant when in good positions. Often didn’t cross early enough, and when he did it wasn’t to his usual standards. Didn’t look comfortable in mucky conditions this afternoon.

Leigh Griffiths – 4

Not the performance he would’ve hoped for today. Was barely in the game and he did pick up the ball he often gave it away. Needed to be sharper today and won’t be pleased with how his performance went.

Odsonne Edouard – 6

Wasn’t in the game in the first half due to a lack of service. Dropped deep and started getting some more joy. Came so close to scoring with a cute flick that came off the post. Like the rest of the team, however, he just wasn’t as good as he normally is.

The Subs:

Tom Rogic (5): Came on and initially combined well with Edouard. Didn’t really change the game. Jonny Hayes (5): Injected some much-needed energy down the left. Bayo (3): Got one of the biggest cheers of the day when he immediately came on and cleared a long throw-in. On for the final few moments.