LAST season, it was a late, late win in Dingwall that played a major role in giving Celtic the impetus and belief to ultimately go on and lift the league title.

It is a little too early to tell what sort of effect repeating the trick may have this time around, but pulling out another triumph gave them a vital three points nonetheless as Ange Postecoglou’s men won their first away outing of the season.

And for debutant Moritz Jenz, what a way to introduce yourself as a Celtic player. Kyogo had given Celtic a thoroughly deserved lead just after the interval, but Alex Iacovitti headed an unlikely leveller for Ross County to set nerves jangling among the huge travelling support.

With time ticking away though, Jenz powered home a header to get the party started behind Ross Laidlaw’s goal, and Liel Abada put the icing on the cake with a peach of an effort in stoppage time.

This victory for Celtic though was all about the creative brilliance of Jota. The winger had a decent first half on the right, but it was when Postecoglou withdrew Daizen Maeda at the interval for Abada and switched him to the left that he really came alive.

By the end, he had three assists to his name, creating all of Celtic’s goals on the day, and showing just why Postecoglou was so desperate to bring him back to the club in the summer.

The Celtic fans held up a tribute to the late John ‘Yogi’ Hughes before the match, hailing him as ‘a Celtic man’, and the team looked as though they wanted to put on a show befitting his memory early on too.

The pattern of the match soon developed as Celtic pinned County back into their own area, with the hosts seemingly challenging the champions to find a way through.

There were blocks and sliding interceptions as Celtic probed, but it didn’t seem a sustainable strategy for County, and Maeda really should have opened the scoring when some Jota trickery on the right allowed him the space to put a cross into the area that Celtic’s opposite winger headed over.

Kyogo had been a little quiet, but he got a yard of space on the edge of the area eventually to sting the palms of Ross Laidlaw, before Matt O’Riley’s drilled follow up arrowed wide of the right-hand post.

County were allowing Cameron Carter-Vickers to travel deep into their territory with the ball, and the big centre-back got into their area before his poked effort deflected behind.

Still, the visitors pressed, and only a last-gasp block from David Concola denied O’Riley at the near post, before the ball was hung up for O’Riley once more to head just wide.

Right on the stroke of half-time, a cross from Greg Taylor was flicked towards goal by Maeda, but Laidlaw sprung to his right to claw the ball clear, and County survived to the interval.

They didn’t survive much longer. Soon after the restart, Concola was booked for hauling back Kyogo, and County were throwing in some hefty challenges to try to repel Postecoglou’s men. But they could do nothing to resist the magic of Jota, as he jinked past a challenge in the box and kept his feet when others might have gone down.

He got his head up, picked out the run of Kyogo, and the striker did the rest, finishing emphatically past Laidlaw from eight yards.

Abada had shown some flashes after coming on, and his cross then picked out O’Riley storming into the box, but his header was straight down the throat of Laidlaw, when a yard either side would surely have resulted in a second.

Remarkably, they were made to pay, as Celtic’s defensive weakness from set-pieces came back to haunt them. A cheaply conceded corner by Jenz allowed Owura Edwards to float the ball over for Iacovitti to attack, and his header had too much on it for Joe Hart, who got a hand to the ball but couldn’t keep it out of the net.

Jota curled a beauty inches wide as Celtic looked to respond, but Jordy Hiwula gave Jenz another uncomfortable moment as he ran directly at the centre-back, eventually hauling him down on the edge of the area and picking up a yellow card.

Edwards drilled the free-kick low through the porous Celtic wall, and Hart did well to keep it out.

Postecoglou had seen enough, and decided to go for broke with two up top, taking off Turnbull and throwing Giorgos Giakoumakis up alongside Kyogo.

When Celtic’s second came though six minutes from time, it was from an unlikely source, even if the creator was entirely predictable. Taylor and Jota worked a short corner, and the Portuguese winger curled an in-swinging ball into the mixer, where Jenz arrived like a steam train to bullet a header past Laidlaw.

Abada put the gloss on the scoreline that it probably deserved, exchanging passes with Jota – who else? – before curling a beauty on the turn past Laidlaw and into the far corner.