WHAT DID WIN DO FOR LENNON’S JOB PROSPECTS?

The decision over appointing Neil Lennon as manager again on a permanent basis was never going to be made on the strength of this visit to St Mirren, unless of course he suffered the same sort of defeat here that led to Tony Mowbray’s demise and saw him appointed nine years earlier.

Taken in isolation, this fairly routine win neither means a lot for Celtic’s title prospects given their lead nor Lennon’s job prospects, but the rather listless second-half showing joined a creeping body of evidence that Celtic aren’t quite firing on all cylinders since Brendan Rodgers departure.

There is an easy counter for Lennon to that argument though, and that is simply to lay out the bald facts of his results. Celtic may not be playing with their trademark panache at the minute, but five wins and a draw from six games is a pretty hard record to pick apart.

And it wasn’t as if Celtic played badly. They were in control for the vast majority of the match, and it was only their own lapses in concentration that were ever going to cost them, as they almost did.

HeraldScotland:

READ MORE: St Mirren 0 Celtic 2: Timothy Weah and Ryan Christie on the scoresheet as the Parkhead side win in Paisley

The question for Celtic and their supporters will be, if Lennon delivers another title and the Scottish Cup to complete a third-successive treble, will they particularly care how it was achieved?

OLIVER BURKE STRUGGLES TO MAKE AN IMPACT AS A STRIKER AGAINST DEEP DEFENCES

The on-loan West Brom man has had his moments playing as a forward since originally being deployed in the role under Brendan Rodgers, but he has undoubtedly been hit and miss. His strength lies in his electric pace running in behind, but playing against a deeper defensive line here, he was ineffective at holding the ball up and bringing others into play.

The ball just wouldn’t stick to the Scotland man, leading Celtic manager Neil Lennon to swap him and scorer of the opening goal, Timothy Weah, by moving Burke out to the left before the interval.

In saying all that, he did have a couple of good opportunities, firing wide from a great position after being played in by McGregor in the first half and then firing straight at Vaclav Hladky after squirming through early in the second,

OLIVER NTCHAM CAN BE INFURIATING

Such is Ntcham’s talent that there are times when the midfielder can make the game look effortless, but often – as was the case here – that can sometimes simply come across as a lack of effort.

HeraldScotland:

READ MORE: St Mirren 0 Celtic 2: How the Celtic players rated

That’s not to say there was anything wrong with his work-rate, but it is when he was on the ball that his languid style often lapsed into him simply not taking due care with his touch or his pass.

His night was rather summed up by his penalty miss just before the half hour after James Kellerman had inexplicably handled Emilio Izaguirre’s deflected cross, the Frenchman stuttering up to the ball and then playing a powderpuff effort up the middle for Hladky to save.

He is far from the sole sinner from the spot for Celtic this season to be fair to him, with five of the 12 penalties they have been awarded not finding the net.

It was no surprise though to see his night brought to a premature end as Ryan Christie made a welcome return from injury just after the hour, and Ntcham’s under-performance was only highlighted further by the impact that his replacement had.

CHRISTIE’S RETURN A WELCOME ONE

The attacking midfielder made his first appearance for Celtic since late February as he came on as a substitute for the last half hour, and he looked as though he had never been away.

Made a huge impact as he found pockets of space in the packed St Mirren defence, causing all sorts of mayhem.

HeraldScotland:

READ MORE: Oran Kearney: I'd have been tempted to walk my team off the pitch if Vaclav Hladky couldn't continue after firecracker incident

It was no surprise to see him pop up to get the second goal that finally put the game to bed, latching onto the ball in the box and getting a shot away that deflected off a St Mirren defender and beyond Hladky to kill off the slim prospect of the hosts getting anything from the game.

DUCKENS NAZON’S WASTEFULNESS COULD COST SAINTS

Despite playing the majority of the game on the backfoot, St Mirren did manage to create some more than presentable opportunities. The unfortunate thing for them was that Nazon was on the end of them all, and the forward had clearly left his shooting boots at home.

He passed up two good headed chances either side of the interval, but it was his indecision that cost St Mirren their best opportunity of the game as he latched on to Mihai Popescu’s quick free-kick, cut back onto his right foot and then dithered for an age instead of pulling the trigger, allowing Scott Bain to come out and take the ball off his toes.