THE Motherwell supporters unveiled a banner before this game that read ‘Sometimes I Fantasise’, a response to Celtic’s Stone Roses-inspired ditty about Odsonne Edouard and a nod to their own dreams of European qualification. As they lay in their beds last night though, it would have been nightmares about the Celtic forward and his strike partner Leigh Griffiths that would have been occupying their minds.

The deadly duo were at it again at Fir Park – Edouard scoring twice and Griffiths once – to put the champions on the road to another three points on their travels as their relentless form since the winter break brought up their sixth win on the bounce, maintaining their seven point lead at the top of the Premiership.

The game was keenly contested enough, and Motherwell certainly contributed to a match that was end-to-end for long spells. Both teams had their chances, particularly in the first half, but it was Celtic’s greater quality that told in the end. And the man that exemplified that point best was the peerless Edouard.

His 23rd goal of the season aside, he was simply sensational, with his speed of foot and thought too much for the hosts to handle.

Callum McGregor, who provided a mix of perpetual motion and craft throughout, scored a sublime third to cap the evening off.

Motherwell had a couple of early openings with new boy Rolando Aarons causing a problem or two, getting a shot on target that Fraser Forster fielded before holding the ball up and creating a chance for Jermaine Hylton, but the winger pulled the ball wide.

They were soon undone though as Allan Campbell was robbed in midfield by Leigh Griffiths tracking back, allowing Celtic to break onto the home defence at speed. Edouard and Callum McGregor had acres to exchange passes, and although Peter Hartley got back to desperately block Edouard’s initial effort, the ball broke kindly for the striker to finish under Mark Gillespie at the second attempt.

Campbell almost made immediate amends as he dragged a low effort wide from Chris Long’s cutback, before Griffiths spurned a golden opportunity at the other end, blasting Olivier Ntcham’s lay-off over the bar.

It was hectic stuff, with the game surely more open than Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson would have liked, but his team slowly steadied themselves again, with Aarons again posing a threat as he turned Liam Polworth’s cross onto the post, although he was penalised for a high boot.

The Celtic supporters gave almost as big a roar when news filtered through from Ibrox that Hibernian had taken the lead against Rangers as they did when Edouard found the net here, but the roar of appreciation that met Forster’s brilliant reaction save from Aarons drilled shot from the angle was up here too, the keeper doing brilliantly to get an arm to a vicious strike to divert it over.

Motherwell went into the second half buoyed then, and Ntcham gave them encouragement as he played a slack pass back towards Christopher Jullien that Long just failed to latch onto.

Just as they so often do though when the opposition thinks they have Celtic there for the taking though, they immediately conjured up a riposte that knocked the stuffing out of Motherwell and the game as a contest.

McGregor showed his deceptive pace to strip away from Liam Grimshaw on the left, getting to the byline and smuggling the ball across for Griffiths to take a touch, take his time, and finish coolly into the bottom corner from close range.

Edouard then showed more fleet of foot to conjure up the space for a cross on the left which Griffiths headed off the face of the bar, before another brilliant link-up between the front two allowed Edouard to slip in Ntcham for what should have been the third, but the midfielder somehow scooped over from point-blank range.

It was a question of how many now for Celtic, and indeed the Motherwell net was breached once again with 15 minutes to play, McGregor taking a touch from James Forrest’s pass to dink the ball up before volleying brilliantly into the top corner.

It was hard not to feel a measure of sympathy for the home side, but unfortunately for them, Edouard and Celtic’s bloodlust hadn’t quite been satisfied.

Declan Gallagher took substitute Ryan Christie down on the edge of the area as he looked to be bursting through on goal, and Edouard – just as he had done at Hamilton on Sunday – curled the ball beyond the keeper and into the net.

The home fans had seen enough, upping and leaving en masse, while the Celtic fans couldn’t get enough of the Frenchman’s masterclass. Their disappointed sighs, followed by their rapturous appreciation as he took his leave to allow Patryk Klimala a late run out, told you everything about his contribution.