Reigning Scottish champions Celtic slumped to a shock 2-0 defeat at the hands of Hibernian on Sunday, as goals from Vykintas Slivka and Florian Kamberi sealed the Bhoys’ fate.
Brendan Rodgers will now be left to pick through the wreckage of what marked a second consecutive defeat for his side after their midweek Europa League loss against Red Bull Salzburg.
Slivka put the hosts ahead with less than a minute on the clock. That set the tone for the rest of the match, as the Hoops failed to ever really get up to speed with the pace of the game.
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Steven Gerrard’s Rangers now top the Premiership table and Rodgers may soon begin to feel some pressure building if his side can’t reassert their dominance over the division again soon. In order for that to happen, though, the former Liverpool boss must identify the flaws in his current system.
One thing that must change, as became clear at Easter Road on Sunday, is that the involvement of Jozo Simunovic must be reconsidered.
The 24-year-old was turned and twisted up far too easily for the first goal, and generally never looked comfortable in dealing with the Hibs attackers.
The Croatian was in and out of the side at the start of the season, but has now started each of the club’s last four games in all competitions. In that time, Rodgers’ outfit have recorded just the single victory – the 5-1 mauling of Kilmarnock. Whilst it’s unfair to suggest that this uncharacteristically poor run of form for Celtic is wholly Simunovic’s fault, the defender has hardly improved the Bhoys at the back.
After Sunday, his latest underwhelming display, Rodgers must opt to abandon this Simunovic experiment now.