The rock star, in town for a four-night stint opening at Glasgow's new Hydro venue, had missed the Champions League meeting in Barcelona in midweek due to a scheduling clash, but he duly took a seat in the directors' box as goals in each half from Anthony Stokes and Kris Commons saw Celtic demonstrate no ill-effects from their efforts against the Catalonian giants.
This factor alone meant they had already gone one better than last season, when they followed up both meetings with Barcelona by dropping points domestically. The Fir Park side last season scalped the Parkhead outfit twice, admittedly both times in Lanarkshire, but those expecting another stern examination were confounded by an afternoon so simple for Fraser Forster - aside from one late, clawing save from a John Sutton header - that even his gaffe-prone England rival Joe Hart could probably have managed a clean sheet.
With Inverness slipping up in Perth, the three points gave Celtic clear blue water over the rest of the SPFL Premiership for the first time this season. Neil Lennon made one change from the side which performed so creditably on Tuesday night, Teemu Pukki coming in for Georgios Samaras, who is nursing a knock.
But before long, the manager was forced into further tinkering. Adam Matthews left on a stretcher after being on the end of a robust Keith Lasley tackle in the penalty box, to be replaced by James Forrest. Although referee Iain Brines took no action, Matthews appeared to fracture a collar bone and will be lucky if he kicks another ball in 2013.
For all his efforts yesterday, Pukki was unable to burnish his credentials for a regular starting place, while the opening goal was a further reminder of what Anthony Stokes has to offer. The Irishman, whose contract negotiations are becoming a chore for the club, showed his instinctive knack for goalscoring to the full in 20 minutes.
He had actually been on the receiving end of another strong Lasley challenge moments earlier, only to find the ball coming his way again via a Mikael Lustig cross, a Kris Commons flick, and a poor misjudgment from goalkeeper Lee Hollis. He fairly lashed it into the empty net with his left foot from an awkward angle. Instantly, Celtic almost had another when Commons headed narrowly wide from Emilio Izaguirre's cross before the Honduran fired past the target with his right foot. The same man ended the half as the only name in Brines' book after stopping a Lionel Ainsworth run with a jab to the face.
By the second half, the Fir Park side would be left complaining that Izaguirre should have received a second yellow, and consequent red, for a challenge on substitute Fraser Kerr. "The scissor tackle from Izaguirre on Kerr was the only time I got a bit heated," said McCall afterwards. "It was a clear free kick, but it had no bearing on the game, apart from possibly being a second yellow card."
In truth, that was a mere detail, because Motherwell were well beaten. Forrest had twice stung the palms of Lee Hollis before the second goal arrived, Commons finding space in the centre circle, and nutmegging Stephen McManus as he meandered forward before sending a cute, chipped finish beyond the keeper with his right foot.
It may only be the first week of October, but Commons went into the night speaking of "going through the remainder of the season unbeaten" and "wrapping up the league as soon as possible".
Stung by the concession of the second goal, Motherwell belatedly attempted to make a game of it, with the introduction of the brawny Henri Anier. But the kind of world class, point- blank save which is becoming Forster's trademark from a late Sutton header, meant Stuart McCall has still to see his side score at this venue. "It has been a good day, results have gone for us elsewhere," said Lennon, who had little choice but to single out the impressive Virgil van Dijk for further praise. "But what pleased me more than most was the energy we showed because we had a very demanding game on Tuesday night. Virgil is playing very well, and he and Ambrose gave us that extra dimension where if the opponents are just sitting in they can carry the ball." Celtic, as Rod Stewart might have noticed, seem to be a happy ship.