Shane Duffy’s Celtic nightmare continued as he was at fault for the decisive goal as St Mirren won at Parkhead for the first time since 1990.
Neil Lennon’s position as Celtic manager is close to being untenable after his side crashed to a sixth home defeat, with Republic of Ireland defender Duffy under fire once more after his latest disastrous display.
Buddies attacker Kristian Dennis fired in the opener in the 18th minute before French striker Odsonne Edouard levelled just after the half-hour mark.
However, Ilkay Durmus restored Saints’ lead in the 37th minute, with more questions around centre-back Duffy’s defending after the visitors ran out 2-1 winners.
Duffy has been constantly criticised for his performances since arriving on loan from Brighton last September and his attempt at marking Durmus for the Buddies’ clincher was baffling.
The huge pressure that has been mounting around Lennon for several months now looks set to reach breaking point, with this latest defeat leaving Celtic a massive 23-points behind champions-elect Rangers.
“It was a poor performance, a poor result,” said a deflated Lennon. “We expect to build a crescendo of pressure and break teams down but that’s been missing this season.
“The lack of belief and lack of quality - it’s not just individuals, it’s a collective, and it’s symptomatic of the season.
“There has definitely been a disconnect between the team that ended last season and the team that started this one.
“It’s a low point in terms of the performance and the result - but I’ll keep working away trying my best.”
Former Republic of Ireland and Celtic keeper Packie Bonner was scathing of Celtic’s latest setback, as he suggested Lennon may now have to pay the price for his side’s continued failure.
“It looked like it was too much for some of the players,” Bonner told the BBC,
“There was no one playing with any purpose, to beat a man and get a shot away. It looks like things are drifting and it just getting worse and worse for them.
“This is a desperate result for Neil Lennon. St Mirren matched the midfield diamond man-for-man and it worked a treat.”
All eyes will now fall on the Celtic board that has continued to back Lennon in the face of fierce opposition from the club’s supporters in recent months.
With their hopes of a tenth Scottish Premiership title in succession now gone, it seems like a matter of time before the manager leave Parkhead, with Duffy likely to follow him out of the Celtic exit door.