Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes claims Celtic player should have been red carded after 'car crash start'
Celtic raced into an unassailable 4-0 lead by the 27-minute mark with goals from Kyogo Furuhashi, Daizen Maeda and a double from Matt O’Riley. Furuhashi also struck the post with a penalty in that period, with a slack back-pass from Kilmarnock midfielder Fraser Murray starting off the rout. Murray also sliced a clearance that led to Celtic’s fourth goal, while the rest of the team's defending left a lot to be desired. While the hosts recovered with the aid of two substitutions – Murray was one player taken off – and scored themselves through Liam Donnelly, the damage had been done, with Killie sitting 11th in the Premiership as the relegation battle intensifies.
"Everything you want wasn’t there like a strong start,” said McInnes. “The first goal was such a sloppy one. It was a chance to be positive and the ball should have been in their box. The decision that was made to be negative in that situation, it’s not what we wanted. So we gifted Celtic and it was something similar to the start of the season where we played a part in the downfall with the cheapness of goals. Celtic are good enough to punish us. There was a 20 minute car crash watching it unfold. I don’t like making early changes but [Christian] Doidge came off because we needed an extra midfielder and Fraser was really struggling after his mistake.
"I want players to show personality and courage to back themselves. Sometimes when you lose a goal your eagerness to make up for it means you start jumping out the slots and thinking that’s the best answer. But it made it worse and Celtic played in between us. That 20-minute period was so difficult to watch. The changes helped us, we got a goal before half-time and I felt we were at least getting something against them. The extra midfielder helped us and we showed pride in our performance and I thought we were the better team in the second half. It was the team I wanted to see from the start.”
McInnes accepted that a second-half red card would not have altered the outcome of the match but was left perplexed by VAR not getting involved when Celtic replacement forward Oh challenged Donnelly with a high boot. Kilmarnock lost striker Kyle Vassell to a sending off against Hibs recently in what McInnes deemed to be a similar incident and he replied if the South Korean merited a red card: “He did. I'm not looking for a red but likewise Kyle shouldn’t be a red at Easter Road. Where is consistency? You see the still and he has his boot in Donnelly’s face. It’s not a red card in same way I didn’t think Vassell was but VAR looking at same incident? It wouldn't have helped today but if it’s consistency we’re not getting it from VAR. It was more dangerous than Kyle.”
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