THERE was one Coronation in the United Kingdom this weekend which Celtic fans rose as one to cheer and applaud.

The Parkhead club were finally crowned Scottish champions for the second season running amid joyous scenes at Tynecastle today as they defeated Hearts 2-0 thanks to a second-half Kyogo Furuhashi goal and a late Oh Hyeon-gyu strike.

Ange Postecoglou’s players, who are 13 points clear of their nearest challengers with four games of the 2022/23 campaign, were far from their brilliant best.

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But they showed why they have reigned supreme in this country for two years by grinding out the result they needed with a gutsy, intelligent and professional display.

Their task was made easier by the controversial ordering off of Hearts defender Alex Cochrane by referee Nick Walsh just before half-time following a VAR check.

But nobody can deny they are worthy top flight winners once more.

So how did Celtic get it over the line? Were Hearts hard done by? Here are five talking points from events in the capital.   


Since losing 2-0 to St Mirren in Paisley in the wake of a draining Champions League group game against Shakhtar Donetsk in Poland back in September, Celtic have not suffered a single defeat on the home front.

They have now gone unbeaten in 34 matches in all domestic competitions and in 27 games in the league.

There were, as was the case in the Scottish Cup semi-final at Hampden seven days ago, anti-monarchy banners held up and chants aired by the travelling supporters in the Roseburn Stand.  

But this was very much a day of celebration, not political protest. And, boy, did they celebrate.


Cameron Carter-Vickers was in Gorgie today to cheer his club mates to the Scottish title. The centre half, who underwent surgery on a long-standing knee problem earlier this week, hobbled in to the ground on crutches and parked himself behind the away dugout.

The defender would have been keen to see his understudy Yuki Kobayashi enjoy a good afternoon and he was not to be disappointed.

Kobayashi has, due to the form of Carter-Vickers and Carl Starfelt in the heart of the Celtic rearguard, featured infrequently since moving to Scotland from Vissel Kobe in his native Japan back in January. This was only his fifth game and just his fourth start.

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Coming in to for such a big game away match was the biggest test the 22-year-old had faced since completing his transfer. The pace and intensity of proceedings must have been a shock to the system. He gave the ball away to his countryman Yutardo Oda and Peter Haring early on.

But Kobayahsi looks comfortable on the ball and composed under pressure. He certainly had much to do in the first-half as Hearts launched attack after attack. But he coped admirably. He is not as imposing or physical as the man he came in to replace. Few are. Still, he looks more than capable to deputising. The clean sheet will boost his confidence no end.


Hearts’ record against Celtic and Rangers during Robbie Neilson’s reign was nothing short of diabolical. After being the Parkhead club at Tynecastle in their opening Premiership game last season they suffered eight consecutive defeats at the hands of their Glasgow rivals.

Could Steven Naismith, the former Rangers striker who has been appointed caretaker until the end of this term and is hoping to do well enough to get the job on a permanent basis, do any better than his predecessor?

Naismith never pulled out of a 50-50 ball in his playing days and he is clearly keen for his charges to show an aggressive streak. Lawrence Shankland and his team mates got in the faces of the visitors for kick-off and applied relentless pressure in the final third.

Hearts did not, however, seriously test goalkeeper Joe Hart during the spell they were on top. Kye Rowles hit the outside of the left post with a shot from the edge of the area. But at no stage did they really look like breaking the deadlock.

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They were unable to maintain their work rate and allowed their opponents to battle back and edge in front. But they were certainly not helped by a contentious ordering off.


Referee Nick Walsh rightly ruled that Hearts left back Alex Cochrane had deliberately impeded Daizen Maeda as the winger raced onto a Carl Starfelt long ball and was correct to book the defender.

But did Cochrane deny an obvious goal scoring opportunity. Back in Clydesdale House in Glasgow, VAR official Willie Collum felt that he had and urged Walsh to have another look at the incident on his pitchside monitor. Walsh upgraded his yellow card to a red after doing so.

The Hearts manager, coaching staff, players and fans were apoplectic with rage. It was a harsh decision. Rowles was running in and there is a good chance he would have been able to block any attempt.


Kyogo Furuhashi had not gone three domestic games without netting before this outing. So there was a high probability the Japanese striker, who had failed to net against either Motherwell or Rangers in the previous fortnight, would get his name on the scoresheet and in so doing become the first Celtic player since Moussa Dembele back in 2017 to hit the 30 goal mark.  

But the marksman was starved of decent service. Callum McGregor and his team mates spent much of this encounter, even in the second-half after their hosts had been reduced to 10 men, camped in their own half and defending. Zander Clark had precious little to do.

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When a half-decent opportunity finally arrived in the 67th minute after Reo Hatate had squared to him at the near post, Furuhashi made no mistake. Oh made sure of all three points with 10 minutes remaining after being supplied by his fellow substitute Aaron Mooy. He has some way to go to match his fellow forward in the scoring stakes.