With the disappointment of Thursday night still fresh in the mind, and with a string of poor results in recent weeks, we travel to a tricky away tie at Aberdeen. The home side are on their own run of poor form and this could be one where we take a much needed away win. Scott Brown will face us in his first appearance against Celtic since leaving on a free in the summer.
Ange has made a change in the midfield area with Bitton coming in for Rogic, who drops to the bench. I imagine he will sit in the holding mid role and allow McGregor to get forward more in the left hand side of the midfield three.
After early pressure from Celtic with a header from Jota and a long range effort from McGregor, it was a high press from Aberdeen that brought the closest early effort when Samuels had a shot from 20 yards that flashed wide. Celtic got a corner right after that should have seen Bitton give Celtic the lead. A lovely flighted ball by Turnbull saw the Israeli nod narrowly past the back post.
Predictably, it would be the little Japanese master that would break the deadline. Turnbull was finding space wide on the right and he curled a tempting ball across the six yard box which cleared the Aberdeen defence, only to find Kyogo who let the ball bounce off his chest and into the net, to the delight of the 1700 away support.
A mazy run from Jota from left to right opened the Aberdeen defence and his pass to Abada led to a shot from the young Israeli but it deflected wide of the target.
21 minutes in and the ball was in the net again from Kyogo with the head, but the header down to create it from Jota was adjudged to be a push in the back and the goal was ruled off.
Hayes flashed a great curling left footer into the danger area towards Ramirez at the back post, but the striker dived dramatically to try and win a penalty to no avail.
A move from Aberdeen was transitioned quickly by McGregor to Montgomery and his quick ball up the left was taken at pace by Jota. Wonderful control from the Portuguese saw him step inside and unleash a dipping, swerving shot that rattled the bar and over.
Ramsay took a corner long to Ramirez. The striker got an effort on target that bounced into the turf. The bounce almost fooled Hart who managed a fingertip push into the air which saw the ball hit the top of the bar and out for a corner. The resultant corner also bobbled about the box before eventually being cleared in a sustained couple of minutes of Aberdeen pressure.
Half time Aberdeen 0 v Celtic 1.
The second half started well for Aberdeen with shots from Samuels, and their pressure led to an equaliser. It was a poor goal, particularly from the viewpoint of young Montgomery on the post. A cross came in that was challenged between Bitton and Ferguson that looped towards goal and the leap from Montgomery guarding the post was not sufficient to prevent it going in the net.
Jota had an effort from an Abada cross but it sailed wide. At the other end Brown nearly scored against his old team. The ball was played in from the impressive Ramsay and the former Celts captain bulleted a header goalbound but Hart was the equal to it and it was blocked and cleared.
With the final quarter approaching of a much more scrappy second half, Ange decided to make some changes. Ajeti and Rogic would come on for Abada and Bitton, while Scott Brown was replaced by another former Celt in the shape of Dylan McGeough. Samuels departed shortly after for MacLennan for Aberdeen too.
Hayes took a ball in the wide area and with a nice touch brought the ball inside onto his left. He let fly a fizzing long shot that stung the palms of Joe Hart in goal and Ramirez couldn't get onto the rebound.
It would be Jota that would break the deadlock though.
The ball came central to the dancing feet of Rogic who played a lovely pass into Montgomery on the left and his first time pass across goal was met by the advancing Jota to flash it into the empty net. A beautifully worked goal.
As "This is the day" rang out from the stands the Celtic players managed the last few minutes of the game very professionally, keeping them territorially in their own right back area for the majority of the time added on.
It was a really good game of end to end football - a genuine advert for Scottish football to a neutral observer, and it was Celtic who took the three points back to Glasgow. A deserved victory for a team who played in an offensive pattern throughout and controlled large parts of the game.
Time will tell if this is a bit of a turning point in the season. We need to get the players back, fit from international duty, and go on a run of successive wins, if we are to have pretensions of winning this league. The possibility of fresh early signings in January means that we have to keep within touching distance until the end of the year and hope that a fresh impetus of talent can help us launch the second half of the campaign to a title victory.
This was the day we won away. Let's make it the first of many.