It may have taken a late strike from new signing Albian Ajeti to eventually get the job done, but Celtic picked up all three points in their clash against Dundee United on late Saturday afternoon.
The Hoops dominated the game in terms of all the important statistics, taking far more shots (23), boasting 65% possession, and winning more total duels too (68).
One man who had an important part to play in the game, was Nir Bitton. The Israel international started his first league game of the season, and helped Neil Lennon’s side keep a clean sheet in their 1-0 win.
As per Sofascore, he made three tackles, two interceptions, a game-high of 86 touches, and won seven of his 12 individual duels too. And after seeing his performance, Celtic fans took to Twitter to share their reactions.
Nir bitton has came in and done his job for a huge part of the ten. Never mad a fuss and disrupted the team in the process. Guy plays anywhere he’s told and does a solid job whenever he puts on the jersey. And what a pler in the meantime 👍🏼💚 Bethlehem busquets ⚽️
— Chicko (@Mclaughlinn7) August 22, 2020
Nir Bitton Appreciation tweet,guys a hero 💚
— Michael Mccorriston* (@mickmccorriston) August 22, 2020
Agreed, disgustingly under valued/rated/appreciated amongst our support
— CelticEddy67 (@CelticEddy67) August 22, 2020
I thought Nir Bitton’s time at Celtic was up but think at the minute he’s got to be first pick for that central defence. At least until Duffy signs 👀
— Stephen (@PortGlasgow20) August 22, 2020
Nir Bitton is easily the most under appreciated player at #Celtic. Strolled it yet again today. Plays mid or defence always consistently good without being a ‘star’. Does his job. Gets on with it. Never moans. God bless the Shalom Stroller! #NirBitton pic.twitter.com/F7aq7ooxSw
— Electronic Tims (@ETimsNet) August 22, 2020
Nir Bitton. Unplayable. Games like that can win a season man
— Ryan Carr (@rydoc123) August 22, 2020
Some Celtic fans however didn’t seem too impressed, with a couple of supporters criticising his passing in particular, saying that some of it was “slack” and that there was “no sense of urgency”.
His passing was rubbish and he had no sense of urgency. I prefer my central defenders to be natural , not converted midfielders. Like Ajer.
— Jonny W (@johnnywatt) August 22, 2020
A better team would have took advantage of a few slack passes.
— dazza32 (@dazzat32) August 22, 2020
Bitton has been stealing a living in this team for years
— MTL Tino (@tinovolante) August 22, 2020
Being a more natural holding midfielder, it was no surprise to see Bitton look comfortable on the ball whilst playing at centre-back on Saturday.
He made 65 successful passes, and completed an impressive 12 of his 15 attempted long balls too. But whether he is the long-term answer as a centre-back in this Celtic side remains up for debate, and with Kristoffer Ajer still in the squad, Lennon will have a tough decision to make going forward.