Celtic should have had enough to secure victory over Hibernian despite the depleted squad at Parkhead, according to Alan Hutton.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Rangers and Scotland star admitted he was stunned to see Gavin Strachan name such strong side on Monday night after 13 first-team players were forced into self-isolation.
Conor Hazard, Stephen Welsh and Cameron Harper were the only youth players who started the 1-1 draw, with the likes of senior mainstays Callum McGregor, David Turnbull and Diego Laxalt all available.
📋 Your #CelticFC team to face Hibernian at Celtic Park.
First team coach Gavin Strachan takes charge of the team tonight, supported by Reserve team Manager, Tommy McIntyre & Reserve team coach, Stephen McManus.#CELHIB🍀
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) January 11, 2021
Turnbull netted the opening goal of the game with a free-kick eight minutes from time but Kevin Nisbet’s strike ensured the points were shared at Parkhead.
Hutton admitted he was expecting the Bhoys to name a team of youth prospects after hearing how many players would be out of action and insisted the team named should have been able to see off Jack Ross’ men.
“I tell you one thing, I was very surprised, I saw their squad last night and I was saying I thought it was going to be kids,” Hutton told Football Insider.
“The way they were talking it was like kids would be starting but it was a strong team, so I fully expected them to go and get a result, if I’m honest, after I saw the lineup.
“Yes, they had a couple (kids) in there but nothing that you would think weren’t capable of going and getting a victory and I actually think Hibs played better, if I’m honest. They had the clear cut chances in the first half, Hazard had to make a few saves.
“Overall, I think that Celtic would have thought they would have been able to go and win that game, so it’s disappointing for them to come back and not take all three points and drop points again.”
The draw means Celtic have slipped to 22 points behind Rangers in the hunt for the Scottish Premiership title.
The Bhoys are now set to play Livingston twice in the space of five days after their game from October was rearranged.