A late Danny Johnson goal snatched a point for Motherwell despite Celtic grabbing an early lead through Ryan Christie in a dominate first half.
Brendan Rodgers made seven changes from the cup final win over Aberdeen with Jonny Hayes making a rare start and the likes of Leigh Griffiths, Cristian Gamboa and Olivier Ntcham returning.
After some good early possession it didn’t take for the in-form Ryan Christie to get back on the scoresheet. With Motherwell’s Liam Donnelly off injured, Olivier Ntcham’s run made space for Christie, who was played in by Tierney and it was a delightful poked finish for 1-0.
The visitors continued to move ball around well on the slick Fir Park surface but the hosts only early threat came from David Turnbull’s drive which flew over.
From Griffiths corner, Filip Benkovic thought he had his second Celtic goal with a great sweeping volley but referee Kevin Clancy blew for a yet another debatable decision.
If it wasn’t 2-0 after that, it really should have been just before half-time when that man Christie earned a penalty but this time it was Leigh Griffiths who was denied from the spot by Mark Gillespie.
A bit of sloppiness in the passing allowed Motherwell into the game but both teams started to lack quality and Celtic had to do a lot more defending than they would have liked.
Kevin Clancy again made another controversial after Allan Campbell scythed down Jonny Hayes but escaped a second yellow.
With nine minutes left, a big chance came the way of Connor Sammon after Edouard gave the ball away. The striker danced past Simunovic but could only find Craig Gordon from his shot.
Celtic looked to be seeing out the three points until the backline failed clear the ball before Danny Johnson smashed a fantastic low finish past Gordon and into the far corner.
Despite their first half dominance and chances, Celtic’s second half performance was poor and they allowed Motherwell to steal a late point and also missed the chance to return to the top of the table.
Here’s how we rated the players after tonight’s disappointing draw.
Craig Gordon: 6
Another fairly quiet evening for Gordon, although took a few too many risks in his passing at times.
Got down well to stop Sammon’s late chance.
Could do nothing about Johnson’s goal.
Cristian Gamboa: 6
Linked the play well to McGregor and Hayes down the left hand side and defended pretty well throughout.
However, whilst one the ground he failed to clear the ball before Motherwell netted.
Jozo Simunovic: 6
Showed real confidence on the ball under pleasure, something which will please this manager.
Was good in the air but maybe could have done more along with Gamboa for the equaliser.
Filip Benkovic: 6
Was very unlucky not to double the lead with a great finish from the corner and very little contact on Hartley, who got the decision.
Kieran Tierney: 6
Defended doggedly when needed and showed great fitness to keep rampaged forward.
Made a brilliant run late on but Sinclair’s through ball was poor and behind him.
Scott Brown: 6
Slotted into the midfield seamlessly and dropped very deep between the centre-backs to start attacks.
Callum McGregor: 6
Enjoyed a more free role tonight with Brown sitting behind. Was tidy on the ball as usual and was unlucky to see his close range shot blocked 40 minutes in.
Jonny Hayes: 6
The Irishman was a keen runner down the right side.
Nearly found the net with a cheeky back heel that was blocked on the line.
Showed good work rate in fairly bright performance especially after such a long time off the pitch.
Came off for Tom Rogic with 10 minutes left.
Ryan Christie 7
Continued his great from with a great run into the box and a calm finish into the corner.
Was a constant threat picking up the ball in the middle of the pitch and earned the penalty with clever play.
Olivier Ntcham: 6
Started in a different role coming off the left and making space for Tierney’s forward runs.
Made a great late dash into the box and very nearly set up McGregor before half-time.
Seemed to be unlucky to be replaced by Sinclair at the break after a decent display in that natural position, unless he picked up an injury.
Leigh Griffiths: 7
Started off lively up top but eventually cut a frustrated after a poor penalty and a couple of blocked free kicks.
Will be annoyed not nail down a starting place after this performance and was replaced by Edouard midway through the second period.
May take a few games to find form.
Scott Sinclair (SUB): 4
Replaced Olivier Ntcham on the left at half time.
Barely contributed anything and had a sub-par 45 minutes.
Odsonne Edouard (SUB): 4
Came on for Leigh Griffiths with 25 minutes left.
Like Sinclair, failed to make any impact off the bench.
Tom Rogic (SUB): N/A
Replaced Jonny Hayes late on in the match.
Here's more you might like
Sturridge to complete Turkey move – why it’s good that Celtic have missed out
Kilmarnock skipper fears Taylor exit – could he replace Tierney at Celtic?
These fans react to Ibe’s rumoured move to Celtic
These Arsenal fans react as Aubameyang talks up Gunners’ title chances
Celta remain keen on Boufal – but Saints mustn’t let him leave
‘Can he manage the team?’ – Newcastle fans share brilliant reaction to Francillette signing