Jota’s 20-yard strike capped a good opening day for Celtic as the Premiership champions kicked off the defence of their crown with a 2-0 victory over Aberdeen.
The Portuguese winger fired home in front of a packed Celtic Park on flag day after Stephen Welsh’s early opener as Ange Postecoglu’s side got off to a winning start.
The Dons, boasting a host of new signings, had their moments and perhaps should have levelled when former Hoops winger Johnny Hayes passed up a superb opportunity just before the break.
However, the hosts were able to wrestle back control in the second period when the newly-permanent arrival from Benfica skipped away from his marker and rifled high beyond Kelle Roos to seal the victory.
Jim Goodwin handed starts to six players making their Premiership debut, including Dutch stopper Roos and North Macedonian forward Bojan Miovski.
But they were behind from the first corner of the game when Matt O’Riley’s delivery was met by Welsh after just three minutes.
Roos then touched an O’Riley effort over the bar, before Joe Hart was drawn into his first save at the other end from Matty Kennedy.
Hayes should have tested the former England international in the closing stages of the opening 45, but dragged his effort wide.
A flurry of substitutions from both sides somewhat disrupted the flow of the contest, but it was lit up 15 minutes from time when Jota rocketed in from just outside the area to seal the three points.
The Dons rarely threatened after that and Postecoglu was able to hand a late cameo to new signing Aaron Mooy six minutes from time.
It puts Celtic top of the pile on goal difference after the first matchday in the Scottish Premiership.
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