“I am still angry. The first-half was nowhere what you expect from a Celtic team. It is the angriest I have ever been in the dressing room,” Brendan Rodgers told Sky Sports shortly after his side’s 3-1 win at McDiarmid Park.
That anger in the dressing room certainly paid dividends because after an awful first 45 minutes in which St Johnstone took a 1-0 lead via calamitous Celtic defending, comical even if it wasn’t so unfunny for the Celtic support at Perth and watching on television.
We asked for Mikey Johnston in our half-time rant and also for Oh to come on and both duly appeared, Johnston replacing Yang (the less said about his showing the better) at the break while Oh came on for Turnbull after an hour.
Oh was heavily involved in the move that ended with the sweetest of half-volleys from the Celtic captain Callum McGregor before an even better finish from Matt O’Riley following a sweet flowing move up the park from a Celtic side at last moving through the gears.
Yet it tool a brilliant save from Joe Hart deep into time added on to prevent Craig Levein’s side grabbing an equaliser. From that save Celtic exploited the gaps Saints had left at the back and Tomoki Iwata – a substitute for Kyogo (who could have had a hat-trick today) – broke from inside his own half, looked up and noted fellow sub James Forrest’s position and clearly played the winger in for a perfect finish with the outside of his boot to wrap up the points.
It’s no bad thing that Brendan Rodgers showed his nasty side this afternoon. This maybe has been something that’s been overdue.
Callum McGregor got the man of the match award although no-one who played in that awful first half really deserved it, so it’s Mikey Johnston’s who has also surely jumped ahead of Yang in Brendan’s pecking order for Wednesday night’s match at Celtic Park.