Kilmarnock’s win over Celtic was as shocking as it was devastating.
The Ayrshire side managed a 2-1 success against Brendan Rodgers’ side on Sunday to make it three games out of six without a win for the Hoops in the league. Yet, it isn’t just the form that’s a concern for supporters, it’s the collective performances.
For large spells of the match against Killie, Celtic didn’t look like they knew how to break them down. Despite finding the net through a fortunate Leigh Griffiths header, Celtic barely created much else.
Fortunately, there were a few positives that came out of the loss at Rugby Park. It will be scant consolation for Celtic fans who now see their side sitting sixth in the table. But, in truth, there were some things to be excited about after the defeat.
The left-winger has barely been seen around Parkhead since signing from St Mirren last January. Morgan spent a productive six months back at New St Mirren Park before joining Celtic properly in the summer.
An injury curtailed his development after a strong start to his Hoops career against Alashkert. This has led to a two-month spell on the sidelines before he finally returned to action against Kilmarnock.
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The winger only had a brief cameo in the contest, but he was constantly lively. Looking to get down the outside and take on his man, he was always forward-thinking. It’s early days, but Morgan appears to be the kind of player Celtic fans are screaming for.
Added to that, the former St Mirren star appears to create the kind of forward-thinking movement fans crave. Seeing more of him in the coming weeks is essential if Celtic are going to look fresh and vibrant.
If we’re being honest, Christie’s Celtic career looked to be over after a not overly-impressive spell at Aberdeen last season.
But Rodgers appears to have put some trust in the attacking-midfielder this season. This has led to several appearances this term from the bench, but he was finally given a chance to star in the starting XI against Killie.
Despite the result, Christie was one of the livelier players Celtic had on the pitch. He made several important forward runs and showed a quick change of feet. He also nearly put Celtic 2-1 ahead with a curling left-footed effort, but Jamie MacDonald denied him.
Christie was ultimately the victim of a lack of movement around him. The likes of Leigh Griffiths and Scott Sinclair didn’t do enough and this had an effect on Christie’s contribution.
Overall, however, he can be happy with his own individual performance. Celtic fans have been disappointed with the amount of players who don’t appear to be looking for that creative spark. Christie, at the very least, certainly tried to provide it.
He deserves another chance to show what he has against St Johnstone on Wednesday.
Thrown into the fire against his former club, Youssouf Mulumbu can be delighted with his own performance.
As he dominated the first half with ease, it looked like being a routine day at the office for Celtic. This was built upon Mulumbu’s impressive tenacity and range of passing. The latter perhaps surprised supporters who knew him more for his battling qualities.
Rodgers decided to take the powerful midfielder off after 70 minutes as he was on a yellow card. With Killie’s Aaron Tshibola trying to get him sent off, it was important Celtic had 11 men on the park.
What Mulumbu showed yesterday, however, was that he was a fighter. Celtic supporters are going to grow to love him for that, and he appears to want to give his all for the club.
With Olivier Ntcham suspended at Rugby Park, this was Mulumbu’s big chance to shine. In all honesty, he took it ten-fold. This is a match where Ntcham would’ve been hiding. Instead, Mulumbu showed grit and power in the midfield to keep Celtic on top of things.
Only when he went off did Celtic start to lose control. For that reason alone, he was the brightest spark on the pitch