If Elizabeth Barrett Browning required the use of fingers and toes to chart the ways in which adoration of her beloved cut across the facet of everyday existence, there is a feeling Celtic may pen its converse with a twisted ode to self-destruction.

How do I wreck thee? Let me count the ways….inexplicable rushes of blood to the head, of defensive lapses so stupefyingly poor one has to wonder about the fermentation of the grapes in the pre-match build-up and a willingness to compromise oneself so cheaply as to invite serious questions about self-worth.

But with 27 goals conceded in their last eight Europa League games, it cannot all be the fault of the board or the fault of the manager, albeit that the openness of the current system left the team exposed to the full weight of a clinical and swift Bundesliga side.

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In fairness, it is not the Continental romance where Celtic will be judged this season but rather in domestic environs. If the early promise of the Ange Postecoglou love-in has waned with the sobering reality of the last month the fact is that the form of those around Celtic mean that all is not lost. Not when there is only six points in it.

Get to nine and the relationship will be tested significantly. And, as has been the case of recent weeks, the game against Aberdeen on Sunday comes with the ‘must-win’ stamp red-inked beside it. In that vein, there was something of note among the wreckage of Thursday evening’s Europa League defeat with the return of Callum McGregor and Kyogo Furuhashi back in the mix.

The wispish Japanese forward missed two first-half chances that one suspects may have had a different outcome with a few games under his belt but there is already a sense that there is something talismanic about the playmaker for Celtic. Ditto for McGregor who seems to be the only player at the club who can successfully link the game for Celtic through the thirds.

Aberdeen have had a dreadful month as their woeful stats illuminate. Without a win in their last eight games, Stephen Glass would love the bounce a win over Celtic would provide. For Postecoglou, it is win by whatever means necessary.

The Greek-Australian is just three months into what was always going to be a substantial rebuilding project but ultimately there is no real extended grace period at Celtic. The same movie stuck on repeat is not going to allow for longevity.

Celtic will get stronger over the coming weeks as key and experienced players become available. Christopher Jullien and James Forrest will need game time to get up to speed given the length of time they have been out for – the former has not kicked a ball this calendar year – but they ought to help solidify a Celtic side whose softness remains a source of concern.