It wasn’t Celtic’s finest day at the office today, by any means. A third straight defeat in the Derby, nineteen points behind their bitter rivals, a straight red card for makeshift centre-back Nir Bitton, and to top it all off, Christopher Jullien is now injured until the business end of the season. However, Diego Laxalt was on the end of some criticism for his poor delivery from the left hand side.
There were positives in the opening hour as Celtic dominated only for McGregor to keep the score level at 0-0. Celtic spurned various opportunities
However, the main negatives clouding over this torrential season usually involves Celtic not being able to take their chances; which inevitably end up in mistakes. And, like clockwork, these mistakes were once again prominent in the manner of which the defeat came about.
Bitton, of course, wasn’t used to playing centre-half and even when he went off, Shane Duffy was considerably (and we mean considerably) worse. However, Bitton wasn’t helped out by some defensive frailties – and Celtic fans were quick to pick up on their biggest liability of the afternoon, Diego Laxalt.
The on-loan Uruguayan has come under constant criticism in recent weeks for Neil Lennon’s side, and the performance he put in today will have done nothing to quash those thoughts as many fans thought it was in fact him who was at fault for Nir Bitton’s dismissal.
This is what some supporters had to say about his performance on Twitter.
Diego Laxalt at Celtic is the most out of place player I’ve ever seen.
— 🇺🇸 (@JaStevensSZN) January 2, 2021
Neil Lennon, Shane Duffy, Nir Bitton, Jeremie Frimpong, Scott Brown, Diego Laxalt.
All not good enough for Celtic
— Mick McG (@michaelm_67) January 2, 2021
This would be Celtic Park if Laxalt or Frimpong could deliver a decent cross pic.twitter.com/PzNdbyfICs
— Aaron (@lil_cathlico) January 2, 2021
Said before the game if we played Laxalt and Frimpong at FB we’d leave the centre of defence exposed and that’s what happened, look at Laxalt at the red card. pic.twitter.com/t1PxtkWwa1
— Tam (@TamMcKenna1888) January 2, 2021
Laxalt is building his Celtic reputation off the game he had against Lille away, he’s done nothing since
— Marcus (@MarcusT1402) January 2, 2021
Laxalt vs Rangers | 📊
Minutes played: 90
Ground Duels (won): 11 (6)
Aerial Duels (won): 5 (4)
Passing Accuracy: 57.1%
Times Possession lost: 29
Interceptions: 3 pic.twitter.com/XfcGwWsxok
— CeltsAreHere (@HereCelts) January 2, 2021
Imagine Laxalt & Frimpong had a final product 😢
— Everything Celtic (@aboutceltic) January 2, 2021
Laxalt was out of position for the pass the allowed Morelos to roll Bitton resulting in the red card being brandished. With that said, he did make a brilliant recovery tackle on Alfredo Morelos as he bore down on goal.
Celtic supporters are likely frustrated with Laxalt, who shows flashes of brilliance but then reverts back to a Lee Naylor in the final third.