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Celtic: Liel Abada let Ange Postecoglou down vs St. Mirren

Ange Postecoglou’s Celtic side returned to winning ways against St. Mirren on Wednesday night, with second-half goals from Cameron Carter-Vickers and Callum McGregor being enough to secure a 2-0 win at Parkhead.

However, despite the Bhoys’ typical domination – enjoying a 76% share of possession, completing 696 passes and having 21 shots at the Saints’ goal – the 56-year-old’s side once again struggled in the final third – creating just one big chance over the course of the 90 minutes, as well as hitting the target with just six of their 21 shots.

Indeed, the fact that the Hoops required goals from their centre-back and holding midfielder in order to take all three points against a side who now sit ninth in the Premiership table perfectly highlights the poor form of the Celtic front three – with Jota, Daizen Maeda and Liel Abada all offering very little in the way of creativity and cutting edge in the attacking third.

However, it will undoubtedly be 20-year-old Abada most disappointed with his performance on Wednesday night, as the Israeli international saw his run of failing to hit the back of the net or register an assist extend to six games in all competitions.

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Lost 71% duels

Indeed, over his 65 minutes on the Parkhead pitch, the right-winger failed to make any real impact on the game going forwards, having just one shot at the St. Mirren goal, failing with his one attempted dribble, finding his man with only one of his four attempted crosses and completing just 29 passes – the second-least of Celtic’s starting outfielders.

The £4.05m-rated forward also offered little in a defensive capacity, winning just two of his seven duels – a failure rate of 71% – being beaten by an opponent once and losing possession of the ball on 12 separate occasions.

These returns saw the £15k-per-week attacker earn an extremely disappointing SofaScore match rating of just 6.8 – ranking him as Postecoglou’s worst-performing starter on the night.

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As such, while Abada is undoubtedly a fantastic talent who is much better than his recent form would suggest, it is nevertheless true that the 20-year-old let his side down on Wednesday night – something that could well see Postecoglou give one of Karamoko Dembele or James Forrest a shot from the off at Livingston on Sunday.

Indeed, should the player who Pat Bonner claimed is a “huge problem” for defenders continue this run of form much longer, he could well start to become a huge problem for his own side, rather than the opposition.

In other news: Postecoglou must avoid disaster on “special” Celtic sensation, he’s a massive “talent”