Celtic were left to rue missed opportunities in their recent match against arch rivals Rangers, as they fell to a 1-0 defeat at Ibrox on Saturday.
Celtic had a total of 13 shots on the day against Steven Gerrard’s side, but the game’s turning point came on 62 minutes when Nir Bitton was shown a straight red card for bring down Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos, in what the referee deemed as a goalscoring opportunity.
Rangers wasted no time in making their man advantage count as well, as an own goal from Callum McGregor gave them a 1-0 lead, just eight minutes after Bitton was shown his marching orders.
Speaking on the ‘A Celtic State of Mind’ podcast (1:17), Tony Haggerty was left frustrated by Lennon’s decision to start Bitton over Shane Duffy on the day, and insisted that there can’t be any complaints over the red card decision.
“I said before the game, the problem with Bitton is that he switches off. He switched off, he’s rugby tackled your man Morelos when he’s breaking free on goal and he’s given Madden a decision, and you can’t complain about the red card.
“He’s holding him to the ground. A few minutes after that the goal came, and you knew Celtic were never coming back from that.”
Celtic now find themselves 19 points adrift of Rangers in the Scottish Premiership table, and will know that they face a tough ask to even come close to Rangers this season, even though the Bhoys have three matches in hand over the league-leaders.
The Bhoys are set to return to action on the 11th January, when they host Hibernian, in a match that they’ll know they have to pick up three points from to stand any chance of challenging for the league title this term.
But they’ll have to do that without Bitton, with the 29-year-old set to serve a suspension for his dismissal against Rangers.