Dimitar Mitov has opened on his stunning performance for St Johnstone against Celtic insisting that abuse from the stands helped to spur him on to a famous clean sheet at Parkhead. 

The Bulgarian shot-stopper made a string of top-class saves to keep Brendan Rodgers’ side out and ultimately help Steven MacLean’s Saints to their first point of the Scottish Premiership season. 

Mitov was the target of social media abuse after the game and was also on the end of shouts from the stands during the contest, with some claiming that he was time-wasting with a faked injury. 

Even Mitov’s teammates joked about his cramp, but the 26-year-old is adamant that his pain was real, and that he did indeed need treatment from Saints physios. 

He explained: “I was getting a bit of stick but I'm so used to it, I have absolutely no problem with the fans having a go at me, telling me different things, that's absolutely fine.  

“That is part of being a goalkeeper and I like it because I give it back, you know, we have fun. To address this, I was actually getting cramps. Embarrassing by the way, a goalkeeper getting cramps, I know! I have had a lot of stick from the boys already! 

“I tape my ankles. I think I put too much tape and the blood wasn't going into my calves and that’s why I was cramping so much. 

“That is what I was trying to say I wasn't even time wasting. I wasn't even trying to be bad, I was genuinely cramping. I was in a bad way.  

“In the end, I got a bit of stick, but that is OK. That’s football and I have absolutely no problem with it. 

“I've seen a lot. I've been given a lot of stick and I've been sent a lot of messages, but it's understandable they are fans, they support their football club.” 

On the experience of playing at Parkhead, Mitov added: “Incredible. I've played before against Newcastle in front of 50,000 and I would say it was pretty similar. 

“I didn't realise how big the stadium was until I actually went to the stadium. I've watched Celtic before on TV, but I’ve never actually seen the stadium. 

“The best thing about playing them in these huge games is when you do your warm up, there's barely anyone in the stadium. 

“Then when you walk out that tunnel and you just look up and you literally see a sold-out stadium of 60,000 people you just get goosebumps.”