Ronny Deila refused to accept that the Premiership title race had been reignited by Aberdeen moving to within a point of his Celtic side following the champions’ 2-1 loss at home to Motherwell.
The Norwegian offered no excuses after a first home Premiership defeat of the season and criticised his defence over the Louis Moult double that means they have failed to win their last four games at Celtic Park.
“It’s way too early to talk about the league,” the Celtic manager said on an afternoon that saw Derek McInnes’s Dons win 4-0 at Kilmarnock. “We know where we are and everything is in our hands but when we come to 30 games then we will see where the various teams are.
“The first half we didn’t play quick enough and were too narrow up front and couldn’t open them up. Second half we had a couple of chances more but then we played way too open and you get punished with counter attacks. That happened today. It was a disappointing day, a bad day at the office, and I think we deserved to lose.
“Of course, very disappointing. When you play games the most important thing is the defence. You have to work really hard defensively and be very compact and we have been domestically. Today we were way too open and got punished.
“I was surprised by today’s performance. I hadn’t expected it or I would have done something to prevent it. We need to play with confidence. In the last 30 minutes a goal down we needed to move the ball quicker and get good situations.”
Motherwell manager Mark McGhee said: “It was a great performance today and I think we thoroughly deserved to win.
“It’s one of a sequence of three performances now and we are starting to see a bit of consistency.”