The Ladbrokes Premiership match that Celtic played against Hearts at Tynecastle was their third in six days and there were fears in the East End of Glasgow that their punishing schedule could lead to them dropping valuable points.

Yet, Neil Lennon’s men dealt with the fixture professionally and won comfortably thanks to first-half goals from Ryan Christie and Olivier Ntcham to move five points clear of their city rivals Rangers.

So what did we learn from events in Edinburgh? And what does it mean for both Celtic and Hearts going forward?

This was a huge win for Celtic

Hearts may not be force they have been in the last few seasons in recent months, but they still, despite their difficulties and lengthy injury list, held Rangers to a 1-1 draw at Tynecastle back in October and always raise their game when one of the Glasgow clubs visit.

This deserved Celtic victory placed the pressure well and truly onto Rangers ahead of their visit to the capital to take on Hibernian at Easter Road tomorrow evening and will give the defending Scottish champions, who have now won nine league games in a row, confidence going forward.

Ryan Christie, goal machine

The playmaker made his first appearance since the Betfred Cup final win over Rangers and opened the scoring out of nothing in the first-half with yet another long-range effort. His manager was right to urge him to try his luck from outside the penalty box more often.

He has now scored 18 goals in total in the 2019/20 campaign. Who would bet against him being Celtic’s top scorer come May?

The Hearts defence is a mess

With goalscorers throughout their team, Celtic need no help scoring finding the net. But they were presented with a glut of chances by their hosts last night. Edouard and James Forrest both should have netted in the first-half after being sent clean through by team mates. Callum McGregor could also have made it 3-0 in the second.

The treble treble winners have pace and invention in abundance going forward with the likes of Christie, Edouard and Forrest in their ranks. But they still cut their opponents open far too easily. They would have won far more convincingly if they had been more clinical in the final third of the park.

Daniel Stendl clearly has much work to do to lift the Tynecastle club off second-bottom spot in the top flight table. He should make shoring up his rearguard his priority.

Stendl isn’t afraid to wield the axe

The German made no fewer than five changes to the Hearts team that was beaten 1-0 by St Johnstone at home on Saturday in his first game in charge against Celtic.

Out went Glenn Whelan, Sean Clare, Jamie Walker, Aidan Keena and goalkeeper Bobby Zlamal, in came Joel Pereira, Loic Damour, Jake Mulraney, Jamie Brandon and Craig Wighton.

Unfortunately for Stendl, his wholesale changes, and the switch to a midfield diamond after half-time, didn’t make much of a difference to the all-round team display.

Nevertheless, this game showed that the former Hannover 96 and Barnsley head coach won’t tolerate substandard performances and will be ruthless.

The Tynecastle pitch needs relaid

When Celtic right back Jeremie Frimpong slipped and fell flat on his backside as he warmed up before kick-off it was apparent all was not well with the playing surface in Gorgie.

It would be exaggerating to describe the pitch as a quagmire, but it certainly wasn’t far off it. Both sets of players struggled to cope with the underfoot conditions.

The capital club laid the hybrid surface at a cost of £1 million last year. But on this evidence that has not been money well spent. Work is urgently required.