St Johnstone turned in a fine display at Parkhead as they drew 1-1 with Celtic in Glasgow.
A cagey first half played out with clear chances few and far between for both sides. Two goals would come late in the game, Chris Kane putting Callum Davidson’s men ahead before Elyounoussi responded with a quick leveler eight minutes from time.
Form and respective moods couldn’t have been any different heading into this. Celtic were feeling the heat after just two wins in 11 while St Johnstone were looking to build on a positive run of 10 games without defeat.
The home side were fairly timid in the first 45, Zander Clark rarely called into action outside of a few catches, easy saves and kick-outs. Saints meanwhile had a couple of half-chances.
One big opportunity fell to Stevie May after the 10th-minute mark, Celtic struggling to deal with set-pieces as the Saints man got on the end of one, turning his header over the bar.
Odsonne Edouard and Tom Rogic had chances for Celtic but Clark wasn’t troubled, May watching an effort before half-time flash by the post. Overall Saints were comfortable in the first 45.
But Neil Lennon was looking for much-needed answers in the second, throwing on Leigh Griffiths as he went two up front, Griffiths the man who came on late to almost single-handedly beat St Johnstone 2-0 last time out.
Ali McCann had an effort from range but that was as close as Saints got to goal heading into the final 15 minutes before David Turnbull forced Clark into a good low save. A massive moment would soon follow.
May broke on the left-hand side of the penalty box, squaring it for Kane, who made no mistake with the finish into an empty Celtic net. But they couldn’t hold on, Elyounoussi’s looping over the Saints rearguard and into the net
Celtic were throwing everything at it late on in a desperate attempt to get the victory but Saints held on for a very credible point to go 11 unbeaten. Here are three things we learned.
Against his former club, McCart was magnificent once again. He’s hit top form for Davidson in recent weeks and again looked extremely comfortable, despite the fact he was dealing with a multi-million forward line.
The entire defence had a good game in Glasgow but McCart in particular shone with his steps forward into midfield and calmness under pressure.
There was a certain atmosphere surrounding these two that very much reflected their form. Saints had been confident in defence in the last 10 matches and again this continued at Celtic Park.
Added to that, they were able to play off Celtic’s vulnerability, who looked a side low in confidence after two wins in 11. It took a Saints goal to wake them up as St Johnstone more than merited a good point on the road.
St Johnstone deployed similar tactics against Celtic that Ross County used to earn themselves a 2-0 League Cup win at Parkhead. Sitting deep and hitting on the break seemed to be the way forward for Davidson.
Striking when your opportunities arose was key to this and that they did when Kane popped up with a goal 10 minutes from time. They couldn’t keep Celtic out for 90 minutes but extending the unbeaten run to 11 will be a positive for Davidson.