No Celtic supporter was surprised by John Beaton’s display at Ibrox, it was perfectly consistent with other performances involving the hoops.
The Lanarkshire based referee was the first domestic official that Brendan Rodgers encountered with Jamie Walker picking up a retrospective suspension for cheating his way to a penalty. Beaton had no hesitation awarding the penalty but apparently apologised to the new Celtic boss at half-time.
Earlier this season Beaton was again in charge of a Hearts v Celtic fixture with Steven Naismith getting away with kicking out at a grounded Jonny Hayes.
No one will ever describe Celtic v St Johnstone as a powder-keg fixture but twice in 2018 he was involved in some very strange statistics.
In September Dedryck Boyata picked up a very late red card for dissent, again there was a real eagerness on the part of the referee to rush into a decision.
According to the BBC website St Johnstone had 37% of possession and committed three fouls with Celtic enjoying 63% of the ball and committing 14 fouls.
It can be assumed that teams only foul when their opponents have possession.
On that basis and making the assumption that there was 70 minutes playing time Celtic committed a foul every 3.15 minutes that St Johnstone were in possession.
In contrast Tommy Wright’s side fouled a Celtic player every 8.67 minutes that the hoops were in possession.
Back in February there were similarly unusual stats
Time and again the visitors were able to arrive late in challenges, put the boot in and body check knowing there was virtually no chance of being punished.
Dick Foster was booked just before half-time then feigned an injury on the hour mark to avoid further punishment for dragging Charly Musonda to the deck.
Murray Davidson and Chris Millar were the chief sinners in the middle of the park with Davidson finally booked in the 75th minute for dragging Musonda to the ground.
David Wotherspoon and Blair Alston were booked in stoppage time to make it a respectable tally of four yellow cards but after waiting until the 75th minute to issue his second card Beaton had already put down a marker on the game.
These days all sorts of stats can be churned out for players, headers, interceptions, passes completed even the mileage covered on the park.
Similar analysis can be made for referees, perhaps analysis of the man from Bellshill might uncover more than a training issue.