Within the opening 10 minutes of Saturday’s Old Firm, Celtic’s defence made two unforced errors.

Inside two minutes, Cameron Carter-Vickers strode forward on the ball and, given his passing option into Callum McGregor was blocked by Malik Tillman, looked to find the feet of Aaron Mooy.

The visitors, however, were true to their manager’s pre-match demands.

“I think we have to get closer. We need to get closer out of possession and get up and get closer to people and play with more intensity and play a derby for what it is” he said reflecting on what needed to change compared to previous meetings with Ange Postecoglou’s side.

Ryan Kent was positioned to intercept Mooy’s pass around the corner and with Celtic’s defence set up to attack, there was space to exploit.

Kent, failing to spot open gaps, held onto possession for too long and eventually the hosts’ recovered.

A few minutes later something similar happened. Again, with Carter-Vickers on the ball, all of his forward passing options were cut off. The American international blindly played a backward pass that Alfredo Morelos just couldn’t intercept.

Fast forward nearly an hour and two similar moments would see Celtic spring into a 3-1 lead.

A complete lapse in concentration from Ben Davies presented Kyogo with a chance he converted and minutes later, following an aggressive press forcing a mistimed defensive pass, Jota was able to intercept a backward pass to score.

These four moments shared similar potential but only one team exploited it.

Alongside Celtic’s ability to finish a quality of chance Rangers could not convert at the other end, this was the main difference on the day. 

Rangers lacked protagonists, players able to turn a game that’s outcome was malleable. Kyogo scored two chances that boasted a lower value than the two Morelos was presented with just after the restart. Celtic were clinical, Rangers were not.

There’s more context around the game, not least Morelos’ goal which seemed unfairly ruled out by Kevin Clancy and VAR. Naturally, the scar tissue of this season and last feeds into the reaction following Old Firm defeat. Frustration at players who’ve lost this fixture too many times or not been able to play convincingly in the latest one.

However, in isolation, Michael Beale will take encouragement from aspects of the tie looking ahead to an Old Firm Scottish Cup semi-final at the end of the month.

READ MORE: Rangers lacked protagonists, this was a day of potential unfulfilled - Joshua Barrie 

This was not the overpowering home performance that’s inflicted two heavy defeats in the fixture recently. Celtic did not enjoy the territorial control exerted last month at Hampden.

Rangers changed their approach off the ball and generally, it worked well. Pressing in a 4-4-2 shape, their two-vs-three in the front line facilitated a two-vs-one against Kyogo and man-on-man approach elsewhere.

That differed from the cup final when Beale’s men played in a narrow 4-3-3 and could never get close to Celtic in the build-up, because they were outnumbered three-vs-five. This meant Postecoglou’s side were in command, on Saturday control of the game was often there to seize.

This hybrid approach worked relatively well against Celtic’s rotations because it allowed Rangers to mark up passing options while not being dragged around the pitch at will.

For example, notice here as Greg Taylor makes an underlapping run, Cantwell passes him onto Tavernier and presses Daizen Madea. Instead of playing catch-up with the left-back, allowing Tavernier to press the line and allowing a huge gap to appear in the defence.

Generally, this approach kept Celtic away from the area of the game in which they’re most dangerous, rotating in the final third and attacking the box.

Here’s a good example of how the visitor's press looked in action.

With Starfelt on the ball, Cantwell and Jack hold their positions to block passing lanes into Taylor and Matt O'Riley. McGregor is surrounded, making a pass into his feet risky.

Celtic play backwards, which is when Rangers start to press. Tillman targets Carter-Vickers while Kent jumps up onto Johnston.

When he finds the feet of Mooy, the Australian’s lay-off into Jota is short. Regardless, Rangers have been able to go man-for-man at the right time and regain possession.

Celtic escaped this plot at points. Here, Tillman anticipates Johnston playing backwards which opens up a passing lane into McGregor. The Celtic captain can play forwards before Jota tests McGregor.

The home side's opener was an example of the visitors falling too deep and switching off momentarily.

Here, Celtic are enjoying a spell of pressure, gradually pushing their opponents back. Tillman is in the wide right position rather than Cantwell. As he checks his shoulder here, Taylor is behind him.

However, the left-back quickly peels away to create a two-vs-one on the outside

From there, the younger’s too slow out to the ball, O’Riley gets a free run in the middle and Kyogo scores. It's a concession that's far too recognisable for Rangers.

Although Celtic’s second was all about Davies’ error, the build-up is worth noting. The home side overloaded their right, meaning Raskin had two players to focus on, allowing O’Riley to receive, turn and play the ball wide to Jota.

What does all this mean?

Celtic's overall chance creation of 0.6xG was low. This was a game about execution. One team were pacey and ruthless in the final third when chances arose, while the other laboured.

Rangers did a good job of containing Postecoglou's side by following their manager's instruction, getting close out of possession and stopping moves at source. 

If any result is to follow at the national stadium, performances are required up top which faltered again on the big stage. However, what Saturday showed is that there's a base to build from.