You need to be pretty much perfect to beat this Celtic team. They demand it from you.

For 40 minutes of this contest, Hearts had them about as flustered as any Scottish side has managed all season. In plenty of ways, it is the only blueprint to follow when up against them, the sheer difficulty of executing it is no small part of why they are once again champions of Scotland.

You need to be aggressive, no half-measures in how you hunt the ball – afford these players time and space and they will hurt you. For 40 minutes, Hearts made them feel thoroughly uncomfortable, even the likes of Callum McGregor and Matt O’Riley, usually so composed, were made to feel the Tynecastle heat on occasion.

You must also attack quickly, linger a moment too long in possession and there will be green and white jerseys on top of you. For 40 minutes, Hearts got the ball forward quickly and forced Joe Hart into more work that he is often used to doing.

It was aggressive and bold, reflective of their interim manager in many respects.

But, and this is the hard bit, you absolutely have to make it count when you’re on top. Knocking Celtic off their stride for a while matters little when the ball does not find its way into the back of their net.

As well as being flawless in your performance, you also need to carry a bit of fortune, the marginal moments must go your way. It does not need repeating to the majority inside Tynecastle that this was not the case for their side.

At first viewing, Alex Cochrane’s foul on Daizen Maeda looked a nailed-on yellow card. When referee Nick Walsh was beckoned to the pitchside monitor at the behest of VAR Willie Collum, the left-back may as well headed for the tunnel at that moment.

There haven’t been many occasions where the on-pitch official has taken a second look and not overturned his original decision. The incident is one of those where it actually gets more uncertain with repeat viewings. Was it a clear goalscoring opportunity? Was Kye Rowles going to get across and cover? That all leads to the most important question, was it a clear and obvious error?

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Cochrane didn’t seem to think so, and it looked as though he even garnered some sympathy from his opponents on his long trudge to the dressing room. Regardless, it call comes back to the original point: Celtic require you be perfect to take anything from them.

Cochrane had switched off for only a split-second, but it was enough for Maeda to escape his attentions. The arm that went out was a distinctive reaction the winger darting past him, but a decisive one.

And then there’s Kyogo.

The forward cannot have touched the ball even three or four times in the first-half. He is so often on the periphery of matches, and rarely features prominently in Celtic’s meticulous build-up.

But that goalscoring record truly speaks for itself. The 28-year-old footballing definition of quality over quantity. He makes a quite ridiculous number of telling contributions after being otherwise absent from much of the action.

That 30 for the season takes him to 50 overall for the Parkhead club, and the conversations around whether he is Celtic’s best striker since Henrik Larsson will only continue. There’s always an element of recency bias around these things, and Celtic have had some formidable forwards in their ranks since the iconic Swede’s departure.

He hasn’t delivered this title on his own, far from it, but few have played such a starring role in making Celtic champions. There was another coronation several hundred miles from Tynecastle on Saturday – one of which the travelling support made their feelings abundantly, and crudely, clear – and on that topic, it’s difficult to anyone dethroning Postecoglou’s team as kings of Scotland any time soon.

Their status as Premiership winners for the second consecutive season has been all-but confirmed for several months, and their march to it has been as ruthlessly efficient as it is deserved. Celtic have simply not let-up en-route to ensuring they remain on the throne of Scottish football.

Postecoglou has assembled a squad of such fearsome strength it has only been bested once domestically this season, and in likelihood will go on to complete a clean sweep of Scotland’s major silverware. Only huge underdogs Inverness Caledonian Thistle can prevent them from doing so in what will have to be one of the most monumental upsets football in this country has ever seen.

The man at the centre of it all, Postecoglou, stood alone in the middle of the Tynecastle pitch as the 1300 in the away end chanted his name on repeat for minutes on end. The 57-year-old has spoken of how he deliberately pauses to take these moments in, to ensure they will stay forever clear in his memory.

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This felt like one such moment. His first competitive match in Scotland came on this ground, and he was written off in some quarters when a ragged Celtic were beaten by Hearts.

The turnaround since then has been wholesale, and the level of adulation he now commands among Celtic’s fanbase is as strong as there has been for a manager in a very long time. With Rangers at the very first steps of a major rebuild, the odds are that the scenes which greeted Postecoglou at full-time will be repeated again this time next year.

That is the scale of the task facing Celtic’s rivals.

To overhaul them requires a quest for near-perfection, as was made all-too clear to a Hearts side who will have left the pitch feeling they gave it absolutely everything.

Can anyone reach the levels required to surpass them? It will take something truly special to do so.