CELTIC moved seven points clear at the top of the league after taking full advantage of Rangers’ slip against Aberdeen. The final scoreline might not have told the whole story of a game where Hamilton succeeded in frustrating Celtic but it is difficult to view the past seven days as anything other than definitive in shaping the title race.

Here are five things we learned...

CELTIC HAVE DEPTH IN THEIR SQUAD

HeraldScotland:

This is reflected on the changes they can make.

As they struggled to penetrate a stuffy and well organised Hamilton defence the game was turned through the personnel that Neil Lennon was able to introduce from the bench. Jonny Hayes, Ryan Christie and Tom Rogic all played in a key part in the late flurry of goals that punctured Celtic’s increasing anxiety. The 4-1 scoreline might not have been reflective of much of what went before the final 10 minutes but the game turned entirely by the trio who came off the bench. Christie’s influence in particular is not to be ignored. The Celtic playmaker came off the bench to put in his first appearance of the year and had a hand in the two key goals that enabled Celtic to take all three points and finally break Accies’ resistance.

WHERE WOULD CELTIC BE WITHOUT EDOUARD?

HeraldScotland:

The France Under-21 internationalist netted the free-kick that enabled Celtic to get back into the game before the break and then exuded calmness as he bagged the third which entirely killed the game and ensured the points. Edouard’s influence has become increasingly talismanic for Celtic and his all-round play is a persistent handful for defenders.

IF LEIGH GRIFFITHS IS ON THE FIELD HE CAN BE RELIED UPON

HeraldScotland:

The striker’s petulance could well have seen him receive a red rather than a yellow in the opening period when he left a boot on Sam Woods and then tussled with Alex Gogic. The striker incurred further wrath of the Hamilton support when he was involved in the dismissal of Jamie Hamilton. The call to send the Accies player off was soft but two hands on a player will always give the referee a decision to make. At just 17 it felt like a harsh lesson for the youngster.

JULLIEN HAS ALL THE ATTRIBUTES BUT IS PRONE TO A LAPSE

At one stage he passed ball out of play for a Hamilton throw-in. Affected by the mistake, minutes later he then allowed Marios Ogkmpoe to run off him as Hamilton opened the scoring. That he atoned with the goal that finally settled an anxious, fractious afternoon will have earned him significant absolution in the eyes of the Celtic support. Little wonder that he enjoyed his celebration.

THERE WAS A GLIMPSE OF NEIL LENNON OF OLD

HeraldScotland:

A quick skip onto the pitch to give Ryan Christie a cuddle and a pat on the back before a little jig of delight – “it’s called relief” in the dugout was indicative of the pressure he would have felt keenly for the bulk of the game. Alex Gogic was excellent for Accies but Lennon might also fancy changing things around for Wednesday night’s trip to Fir Park.