Cameron Carter-Vickers our knight in shining armour. After a not so convincing win over Livingston last week, Celtic have bounced back with a very convincing win over St Johnstone. The team looked so much more fluid going forward and the difference between having CCV and not having him is night and day, he all but controlled the back line and kept a sense of calmness at the back.

In the first half hour or so of the game Celtic were all over St. Johnstone but could not finish their dinner. Although in the first half alone we had 3 goals chopped off for offside, which with hindsight, were off. At the half hour mark Celtic had a chance from a corner. The ball fell to Carter-Vickers whose shot was blocked; the ball then fell perfectly to Daizen Maeda whose shot was also blocked but this time by the arm of Luke Robinson. After the VAR check that followed, no penalty was giving which was daylight robbery.

Man of the match Nicolas Kuhn was continuing his great form from last week and had St Johnstone’s left back Luke Robinson in his back pocket. It seemed as though we were going to go into half time goalless until Kuhn twisted and turned to beat his man before delivering a perfectly weighted ball to Kyogo Furuhashi (who else) who took flight to head it home, 1-0.

Celtic went into half time 1-0 up with an air of confidence about them. Following the break, during which Celtic had a heart-warming showing alongside the charity cafefootball, we came out flying. Not even a minute in Maeda found Kyogo out wide on the left who squared it to his partner in crime Kuhn, who had an easy finish, 2-0. The football we were playing after this was liquid, although we struggled to put away a lot of chances, including an unlucky strike by Kyogo that pelted the cross bar and an ambitious free kick by Matt O’Riley that was denied by the keeper.

Brendan then decided it was time for a change, he brought off Kuhn who was walking gingerly as he walked off and Paulo Bernardo, bringing on James Forrest and youngster Daniel Kelly. Although they say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, there’s nothing to say an old dog can’t use their old tricks as Forrest made an instant impact burying a lovely finish after O’Riley found him in barrels of space after only being on the park four minutes, 3-0.

Celtic continued on the front foot for the next ten minutes until Brendan decided to bring off Kyogo and CCV, bringing on Odin Holm and Adam Idah. Now I hear you ask, Carter Vickers coming off, will that not leave us weak at the back? Yes. It did, as Conor Smith found the net five minutes later off of a rebound from a great save by Joe Hart, 3-1. Brendan responded by bringing on Lagerbielke to play centre back instead of Tomoki. 

Celtic could’ve easily made it four on many occasions before the final whistle but couldn’t find the net. A solid win but it does raise eyebrows about the state of the backline without Carter-Vickers, so who knows what we might do against Livingston after the break, as I can’t imagine Brendan will risk CCV getting injured. 

Overall, there was a lot of good to take away from this game, our wing play was amazing and it can only get better with the return of Palma and Yang. Our midfield does still miss Calum Mcgregor as Matt O’Riley hasn’t been at his best, although Tomoki Iwata has been quietly bossing the middle of the park. Alistair Johnston and Greg Taylor look exploitable at the back as they struggle to track back very often although the return of Carter-Vickers, Reo Hatate and hopefully Calum Mcgregor should bring considerable confidence going to Ibrox in a few weeks.