St Johnstone boss Derek McInnes rues late Celtic goals
McInnes's side lost two late goals to Celtic in Glasgow
St Johnstone boss Derek McInnes was unhappy that his side conceded late goals in their 2-0 defeat by Celtic, but was heartened by the performance.
"Defending was there in abundance, but it's a sore one to take," said McInnes.
"Any defeat late on in the game is hard to take. When you put in the effort like the players did, it's a sore one.
"Sometimes you come to places like this, and you feel like a goal is coming because they put you under a lot of pressure. I never felt that today."
South Korean duo Cha Du-Ri and Ki Sung-Yeung netted both of Celtic's goals in the last three minutes of injury time to seal the win and, despite the defeat, McInnes felt his players demonstrated quality against world-class players.
Their agenda is to win a title - and the guy who scored one of the goals played at a World Cup. We had an organisation and confidence, discipline, which I was pleased with
St Johnstone manager Derek McInnes
"We were nine minutes away from getting a point at Ibrox this season and we were two minutes away from a well-deserved point here," said McInnes. "That, for me, shows progress.
"I think we've got a bit of confidence and competence, and we're up against top players.
"Their agenda is to win a title - and the guy who scored one of the goals played at a World Cup.
"We had an organisation and confidence, discipline, which I was pleased with."
The result leaves St Johnstone in eighth place, two points above St Mirren and one point behind Dundee United - who have played three matches fewer.
St Johnstone rarely threatened the Celtic goal, but McInnes made no excuses for the manner in which he set out his side.
"We knew our chances would be few and far between and we had tried to be positive against Celtic before," said McInnes.
"We pressed high up the pitch before, and we got done with two or three goals at home by letting them in behind us.
"We just defended a bit deeper, and I'm not going to apologise for the way we set up, we played very well.
"We're not here to entertain the Celtic punters, we were here to get a point for St Johnstone.
"Celtic kept going, that's what clubs like that do."
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