Motherwell FC manager Stephen Robinson has admitted that his men were outplayed and outfought at Celtic Park on Saturday.
The Steelmen were brushed aside 5-1 in a largely one sided Scottish Premiership clash which saw Hoops striker Odsonne Edouard help himself to a hat-trick amid minimal resistance from ’Well opponents.
“I was expecting a lot more from my players today,” Robinson said.
“We won’t come with excuses like: ‘Oh, it’s a hard week, we couldn’t do this or we couldn’t do that’.
“We turned up in the first half and it wasn’t us.
“Celtic are a top class team, they make changes and they bring in top class footballers.
“But if you’re going to sit off them and let them do that to you then you’ve no chance.
“The game was effectively over at half-time. As well as outplaying us, they outfought us as well which is the biggest disappointment of the game really.”
Motherwell pulled it back to 2-1 on 64 minutes when substitute Elliott Frear tapped in Richard Tait’s brilliant cross from the right.
But a full comeback never materialised as Celtic netted three more goals (also including two for James Forrest) to inflict a heavy defeat on the Steelmen and extend their unbeaten domestic run under Brendan Rodgers to 67 matches.
“Second half we chased the game, had a go and put Elliott on and he did excellently,” Robbo added.
“We put Deimi (Petravicius and Carl McHugh on but it’s too little too late.
“And when you’ve got the class that Celtic have to bring off the bench, never mind what started, they’re going to pick you off.
“And that’s ultimately what happened today.
“When we got it back to 2-1 I thought we could get back into it.
“We couldn’t get any worse than the first half, we were poor and Celtic were very good as well, take nothing away from them.
“At 2-1 Moulty has a half chance and we had a couple of other little half chances as well. We were right in the game then and you always run the risk that they can pick you off.
“We made mistakes for the goals.
“Our defenders stepped off them for the second goal.
“That’sthe lesson, when you play against top class players you can’t do that.
“That’s something our boys will learn from, bearing in mind they’re making their way in the game.
“We didn’t get tight enough for the third goal and the fourth goal’s just an error which was unfortunate because I thought Richard Tait was excellent and has been in all three games.”