SCOTT Bain saw in horror that he had palmed the ball straight to Alfredo Morelos four yards out and fully expected to have to pick it out of his net for a third time.

Instead, the little Colombian inexplicably used the outside of his right foot rather than roll the ball into the unguarded portion of the goal with his left, and only succeeded in striking the post.

Alert enough to leap on the loose ball before it crossed the line, Bain – a surprise starter in place of the injured Dorus de Vries – said afterwards that he was simply delighted to have proved his worth by contributing to such a famous Celtic win, secured by a side who had to play the last 34 minutes with ten men following the dismissal of Jozo Simunovic. The Parkhead side now lead the Ladbrokes Premiership by nine points with a game in hand, a seventh successive title surely a formality.

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“I’d saved the first shot [from Josh Windass] and I looked up and saw the ball going to him [Morelos],” said Bain. “I just thought, ‘Aw naw’.

“Then, luckily, he has hit the post and I was able to scramble and catch it before it went over the line. I was expecting him to score but I knew I had to get up just in case anything it happened. Luckily for me, it hit the post and rolled along the line.”

“It was a massive moment in the game but the way we handled going down to 10 men was amazing,” he added. “I saw the same up at Pittodrie when we lost a man. The composure, the calmness, belief and togetherness in this squad to dig your mate out is why we were good enough to get the result.”

It wasn’t until yesterday morning that this former Alloa and Dundee goalkeeper - signed on-loan from Hibs on deadline day, having never played a game for the Easter Road club - knew for sure that his big moment was about to arrive. The burning question now is whether he gets to keep the gloves on a permanent basis.

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“I woke up on Sunday morning with a text saying that I was playing,” he said. “I knew Dorus was struggling and then word came through at 8am that he was out.

“So I had plenty of time to get myself right and focused on the game,” he added. “I was glad that I could contribute to the win. I don’t know if I’m a hero now. I just wanted to come in, and enjoy the game and the experience. I enjoyed every minute of it and I suppose that’s only the case if you do win.”

The goalkeeper savoured the moment as the visiting supporters hailed their heroes after the match. “It’s a great chance for me now but I’ll go in next week and work hard and stay humble as I’ve always done,” he said. “But I’ll savour this for the next two days. This is the biggest game - and the biggest win - I’ve ever had. The scenes at the end were unbelievable. I’ve never seen the level of fans like that.

“I just wanted to savour and enjoy it,” he added. “I don’t normally think about taking it all in. Today was special though, the way we won the match. We were behind twice and then a man down, so this is one I will definitely look back on at the end of my career and think, ‘that was unbelievable debut’. I just wanted to take a breath and enjoy it.”

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Captain Scott Brown – one man who singled Bain out for praise – said that Celtic had done their talking on the pitch at the end of a week where the backdrop included a much-reported roar from the Rangers dressing room when the two teams were paired together in the last four of the William Hill Scottish Cup. ”

They talked all week and we just sat down,” said the captain. “We did our talking on the park. We always do our talking on the park. Whether we win or we lose, we always fight till the last minute. That’s happened a few times to us now and whether there is 11 of us or 10 out there, we have always got that belief.”

Brown said this Ibrox victory was as sweet as any he had experienced but there was still work to be done to secure a seventh league title in a row. “It’s definitely up there,” he said. “With ten men for so long, we had to defend really well. Have we won the league now? No, no. There is still a long, long way to go.”

Both men had a hand in Celtic’s crucial second equaliser, lobbed in by Moussa Dembele while Brown lay on the turf after a collision with Daniel Candeias. “I saw Moussa’s run! No, it was a clearance! It was a great finish from Moussa. They were always trying to get tight to us. There were a few fouls and stuff like that but it is always going to happen when you play here against Rangers.