CELTIC manager Ange Postecoglou has urged his men to ignore refereeing decisions and focus on their performance after a second-half flashpoint fuelled them to kill off St Johnstone.

A coming together between Saints striker Chris Kane and Celtic defender Cameron Carter-Vickers saw both players receive cautions from referee Nick Walsh, a decision that riled the home crowd.

But while his players seemed to be spurred on by the incident, Postecoglou has urged them to remain calm and stay focused on their football, even if they – like he – couldn’t understand why Carter-Vickers was cautioned.

“It’s on the other side…I thought the referee handled it okay,” Postecoglou said.

“People run in and they push and shove. I always have a chuckle at these things because some of those on the outskirts, I’m not sure how keen they are to get involved!

“I thought the referee handled it well. I couldn’t see why Cameron got the yellow card but I’m 50 yards away.

“Over my years in management I have learned that you let those things go as much as you can.

“You can go down that rabbit hole and end up pulling your hair out. I try to let the officials handle these things.

“It’s important we don’t get frustrated at these kind of things because they can eat away at you and we need to focus on what is important to us.”

The win over St Johnstone moves Celtic to within a point of Hearts, Rangers and Dundee United at the top of the Premiership table. It was their third successive league victory and their fourth in all competitions.

“It’s pleasing but what’s also pleasing is the way we are playing,” Postecoglou said. “We are keeping a consistent level of performance and we want to maintain that consistency.

“Our performances have been good in all the games since the break so from that point of view it’s pleasing but we have just got to keep going.”

Postecoglou has been particularly pleased by the patience shown by his men against St Johnstone, after a similarly persistent performance in the win over Ferencvaros.

“I knew it was going to be a difficult game, one where we were not going to get a helluva lot of space, particularly in and around their box,” he said.

“We had to be disciplined and patient with our football and I felt we did that.

“There weren’t many times we got frustrated or over-played things – we stayed calm and composed. Also we were clinical when we did get the chance. That was key, we took our chance really well. Giakoumakis was in a good area and it was a good ball across.

“I never felt like we were out of control. It was good to get the second goal and we could probably have had a couple more in the end.”

The increasing options available to Postecoglou as more players come back to fitness allowed him to rotate the side in the win over Saints, and he is satisfied with the strength in depth across the board that he now has at his disposal.

“It was good to get minutes into Giorgos and it also allowed us to give a rest to Liel (Abada) who has been playing non-stop,” he explained.

“It was good to get Giorgos a start, (Josip) Juranovic also got 90 after his injury and Mikey (Johnston) got 30 minutes too.

“From that point of view it’s certainly helpful because we are going to need a strong squad.

“I have already seen how challenging it is for us when we are missing players so having some back is good.”