St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright is determined not to let their hat-trick of Celtic losses define their season.
The Hoops sauntered into tonight’s William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final draw thanks to a 5-0 victory in Glasgow that came in the wake of two recent league wins over Saints.
The home side’s goals came from Scott Sinclair’s hat-trick and strikes from James Forrest and Scott Brown.
It was painful at Parkhead for the Perth players, who were on the back foot from start to finish.
However, with the McDiarmid men looking good for a top-six finish in the Premiership, Wright doesn’t want their three recent defeats to Brendan Rodgers’ side to spoil everything.
The St Johnstone boss said: “We were beaten by a far better side.
“We didn’t help ourselves with the start we had.
“To be fair to the players, I thought they settled down after losing two quick goals and we had a good chance through Chris Kane.
“At half-time we knew the next goal was going to be vital and we had to get it.
“They still cut us open, though, and we conceded more quick goals.
“Effectively, we lost the tie in the first nine minutes.
“The players can’t get too disheartened because they have been beaten by a far better team the three times we have played them.
“We have to make sure these three defeats don’t affect us going forward.
“I can draw a line under it and hopefully the players can, too, even though we have tough games coming up.
“We can’t define our season by three defeats (to Celtic) and allow that to affect us.
“We are still in the box seat for the top six and have a hell of a lot to play for.
“There is no disgrace in getting beaten by a team that, at the minute, are wiping the floor with everybody.”
Captain Joe Shaughnessy echoed his manager’s words, saying: “We gave ourselves a mountain to climb.
“When you come here you need to stay in the game and at least get to half-time at 0-0 or better but we were left with too much to do after losing poor goals so early.
“We’ve played them three times in our last five games and that’s the hardest run we could’ve had but we can’t allow this result to affect our campaign.”