Dundee boss Neil McCann admitted he was disappointed with his side’s lack of bite and aggression as defending champions Celtic eased to victory at Dens yesterday.
The Hoops secured all three points thanks to two first-half strikes from James Forrest and former Dark Blues favourite Leigh Griffiths.
After establishing that lead, the Glasgow giants looked comfortable throughout with Dundee rarely threatening Craig Gordon’s goal.
However, McCann also insisted he could not be too tough on his players after a difficult run of games.
The manager said: “I thought we lacked a bit of aggression in our play.
“The application and workrate was there but we lacked bite and sat off Celtic too much. When you do that, they are a real dangerous side.
“I thought after we lost the first goal, which disappointed me because we talked about how Celtic launch their attacks, we had a little spell.
“We passed the ball and Celtic were off it again but then we lost a sloppy second goal, it was a terrible one actually.
“Faissal (El Bakhtaoui) needs to be stronger, it wasn’t a good pass and we give possession away.
“Celtic then hit us on the counter-attack.
“We needed to up the aggression levels in the second half but we didn’t really do that, we maybe lacked a wee bit of belief that we could get into the game.
“I won’t be too hard on them because we have had three tough games lately.
“We have one more then we will get in to the winter break.”
There was a lengthy stoppage in the first half after the home side’s Josh Meekings and Celtic’s Jonny Hayes were injured as they challenged for the ball.
Both had to go off, with the Hoops player on a stretcher but McCann insisted there was nothing sinister in the challenge.
He said: “There was no malice in it. It was two fully committed players going for the ball and they both came out of it hurt.
“I expect my centre-back to be fully committed and Jonny has gone in the same way.
“Josh took one on the top of his foot and I think Jonny got it on the shin.
“It looked and sounded a bad one. It happened so quickly and we wanted the ball kicked out immediately but it wasn’t.
“It should have been called straight away because both players were down.”