Celtic will need to replicate both this performance and result against Lille last night in the more meaningful matches they have coming up in the weeks ahead if they are to turn their season around and Neil Lennon is to survive.

The Parkhead club’s hopes of progressing to the knockout rounds of the Europa League ended after just four games and they were simply seeking to salvage some pride in their final Group H outing. Far more important challenges await.

Still, after just two wins in 12 – a run that has sparked angry protests by their supporters and led to calls for Lennon to be sacked – this was far better and gave their besieged manager cause for optimism.

The eye-catching contribution of David Turnbull - who scored the winning goal, his first for Celtic, with 15 minutes remaining after a jinking run down the right flank by Kristoffer Ajer – will have lifted him no end.

Scott Brown was rested along with several other first team regulars last night. But the club captain has, like so many others, not been at his best at times in the 2020/21 campaign. It will be interesting to see if he is involved in the Premiership meeting with Kilmarnock on Sunday after this.

The defensive problems which have proved so costly for Celtic of late were still in evidence at times. The first goal they conceded stemmed from a unforced error and the second from a needless free-kick. Works remains to be done.

However, there was much here for to build on. Ewan Henderson, Patryk Klimala, Ismaila Soro and Turnbull all furthered their causes no end.

Lennon, as he did last year against Cluj away in Romania after a place in the knockout rounds had been secured, used the outing to give his fringe players a taste of European football.

Conor Hazard, his young countryman, made his first team debut in goals five years after joining from Cliftonville in his homeland. Scott Bain and Vaslis Barkas were both left on the bench.

The 22-year-old has done well during loan spells at Falkirk, Partick Thistle and Dundee in the past few seasons and has even been capped once by Northern Ireland. But it was quite a night for him to make his bow and something of a step up.

Lille, who were attempting to finish above AC Milan in their section and receive a more favourable draw in the last 32 on Monday, fielded a strong starting line-up. Jonathan David, the Canadian internationalist the visitors signed from Belgian club Gent for €30m in the summer, led the line.

Shane Duffy returned at centre half for Celtic alongside Christopher Jullien as Ajer moved out to right back in a back four and Lennon reverted to a 4-2-3-1 line-up.

There was a moment’s silence inside the stadium before kick-off in memory of Paolo Rossi, the legendary Italian striker whose passing had been announced earlier in the day.

Klimala will be doing well to scale the same heights as that great of the game. Still, the Polish forward showed exactly what he has to offer. He worked tirelessly up front by himself and tested Lille keeper Mike Maignan with a powerful effort in the first-half.

However, Turnbull, operating in the playmaker role just behind Klimala, shone and showed why Celtic had been prepared to part with £3.25m for him in the summer. He only returned from a spell out with coronavirus on Sunday, but he got about the park well, was composed in possession and distributed the ball superbly.

It was Turnbull’s dipping corner kick which gave Celtic in the lead in the 22nd minute. Jullien pulled away from Tiago Djalo and met the delivery with a glancing header which Jonathan Ikone was unable to prevent crossing his line.

Soro, the Ivorian internationalist who moved to Scotland back in January, made his first start for Celtic in central midfield alongside Callum McGregor. The diminutive 22-year-old didn’t look out of his depth in the slightest and made a series of well-timed tackles.

It was the more experienced McGregor who was at fault at the equaliser two minutes after the home team had taken the lead. He passed straight to Yusif Yazici and his opponent promptly squared to Ikone. Hazard had no chance.

McGregor, though, has atoned for his error just two minutes later. Lille left back Domagoj Bradaric fouled Jeremie Frimpong inside his area just as the winger was about to try his luck against Maignan. The Celtic skipper made no mistake from the spot.

Frimpong, who had been barged into the advertising hoarding by Bradaric early on, hobbled off injured and was replaced by Henderson. It was the midfielder’s first appearance of the season and his first competitive game since January.

But the 20-year-old, the brother of Lecce player Liam, was undeterred. He showed great feet to sidestep Sven Botman and slip the ball to Klimala early in the second-half. Turnbull, too, turned sharply after being supplied by McGregor and had an attempt deflected wide.

In the 71st minute Duffy gifted Lille a free-kick with a barge on Isaac Lihadji. Timo Weah, who spent a spell at Celtic two seasons ago, volleyed beyond Hazard after Yazci’s cross had been headed clear to restore parity. But Turnbull struck just four minutes after the leveller.

A good save by Hazard from Lihadji made sure of the Scottish champions’ first victory since they trounced Motherwell at Fir Park way back on November 8.