Kyle Vassell reckons playing against Celtic is similar to his experiences competing with Premier League clubs.

The Kilmarnock striker faced the unenviable task of playing as a lone striker for much of the 4-1 defeat at Rugby Park and admitted Celtic are up there with the top teams he's faced.

"When I played Premier League teams in the cup. Genuinely, the top teams," said Vassell when asked if he could compare Celtic to other clubs he has played.

"[Callum] McGregor is so good. He is so good at football. He runs you away to make space for other players and you have Taylor coming in the pitch.

"The way they are organised, and they are so disciplined, they just keep the ball.

"My comparison would be a Premier League team."

Frustratingly for the hosts, the early opener from Kyogo Furuhashi came off the back of a mistake and sparked a 20-minute spell - described by McInnes as a "car crash" where Celtic would add three more goals and strike the post.

Vassell explained: "They are such a hard team to play against anyway, the second you give them a bit of a sniff or incentive they just capitalise and are off to the races.

"It took us a little bit too long to regroup and settle down.

"We obviously did that eventually but you can't give them four goals at home in 20-odd miniutes. But they are top of the league for a reason.

"We know what we can do and we know if we started that way it would have been a much closer game and, who knows, we could have frustrated them for a period and nicked a goal.

"Of course it's frustrating, you don't want to lose any game let alone 4-1 at home.

"But it's Celtic, they are genuinely some of the best players, great players. So you have got to give them a little bit of respect but we let ourselves down."

READ MORE: McInnes makes Oh Celtic red card claim as he slams 'car crash' spell

While Vassell was complimentary of Celtic, he knows that Kilmarnock's season won't be defined by results against the champions-elect. 

Instead, Derek McInnes' side have six games left to secure their Scottish Premiership survival - first against St Mirren before the post-split fixtures.

"No, nothing like Celtic. They are a cut above," he said when posed that no teams Kilmarnock have left to face will play like Ange Postecoglou's side.

"Those games we can all see more of the ball and be a bit more of an attacking threat and hopefully we can do what we need to do in those games."

And there's no shortage of confidence from Vassell over the mentality of the Kilmarnock squad to battle to top-flight safety.

Kilmarnock currently sit in the relegation play-off spot with a single point between bottom club Ross County, Vassell's side and Dundee United in 10th.

Just one week previous to the Celtic defeat, his side had come back from a goal down against Hearts to claim a precious three points in the league table.

He added: "We proved that when we went down 1-0 against Hearts and came back to win the game. 

"We have had some good results this year. We proved today - it could have been five, six, seven but we did eventually regroup and settle ourselves down.

"Maybe it was the subs who came on and changed the dynamic and our shape a little bit but we have definitely got the fight, 100 per cent."