Following 73 minutes that looked like costing Neil Lennon his job, a mere seven may have saved it. For the time being, at least.
In an astonishing encounter, Kilmarnock raced into a 3-0 lead over Celtic before a stunning, sharp and unforeseen comeback ensured parity. With their pursuit of Rangers in mind, this represented a poor result for Celtic and Lennon. Nonetheless, the level of spirit shown amid their recovery is worthy of note; and an indicator that the Celtic players want their manager to succeed.
"I have mixed emotions," Lennon said. "I am angry with the first-half performance but proud of the performance in the second half. It is what it is, two points dropped, from my point of view. At half-time, I was as angry as I could possibly be."
The desperate nature of Celtic's showing for more than an hour cannot be ignored, and pertinently was not by Lennon. Their flaws are recurring, a softness technically and mentally, particularly in defence, which was alien to Lennon during his playing days. In their past four SPL matches, they have dropped eight points.
"I'll turn it round," Lennon added. "We will turn it round but it will have to be done very quickly. I think I'll get it right, I just have to make sure it isn't too late."
By the interval, this bore all the hallmarks of Lennon's St Mirren. It was in Paisley, after all, that Tony Mowbray's Celtic tenure ended with a 4-0 defeat. Similarly, here, Kilmarnock looked as if they could score at will.
And yet, in highlighting the sort of incidents which befall a manager under pressure, Celtic should have been ahead within six minutes. Anthony Stokes somehow wasted a glorious opportunity from no further than three yards out.
Dean Shiels profited where Stokes could not. From a Paul Heffernan cutback, the Northern Irishman drilled a fierce, low shot past Fraser Forster. The worst indictment of Lennon's Celtic was their utter inability to mount an immediate response.
Danny Buijs had served notice of Kilmarnock's willingness to double their lead with a shot which Forster tipped on to his crossbar before Heffernan did exactly that.
In a role reversal from the opening goal, Shiels fed Heffernan. Celtic claims for offside, legitimate ones, it seemed, were ignored by the officials as Heffernan slotted home.
By the break, Kilmarnock's lead stretched to three. Not since their championship-winning season of 1964-65, it must be noted, had the Ayrshire team beaten Celtic by more than two goals.
Charlie Mulgrew was the culprit as James Fowler sent the home support into further raptures. A pass-back from the stand-in Celtic captain was desperately short, allowing Fowler to nip in and lob the ball over Forster.
At that stage, Kilmarnock's hunger put Celtic to shame; Lennon's team were either uninterested or displaying attitude of the wrong kind. Beram Kayal, one of Celtic's star performers of last season but too often a liability in this one, was withdrawn at half-time to avoid an inevitable sending off. The second half had regressed into something of a nonevent before Stokes, aided by the similarly impressive James Forrest, hauled Celtic back into proceedings. Two strikes from distance prompted Kilmarnock panic. The first was a Stokes free-kick, brilliantly curled into the top right-hand corner of Anssi Jaakkola's net. The same player lashed a 25-yard shot past the Kilmarnock goalkeeper to trigger exuberant Lennon celebrations.
For the 40-year-old, better was to follow. Mulgrew headed Celtic's equaliser past Jaakkola after Daniel Majstorovic knocked a Ki Sung-yueng cross into his path. Incredibly, Celtic suddenly had aspirations of victory.
It was strange, then, that no clearcut opportunity was fashioned for the visitors to complete their turnaround. It was Heffernan who spurned the best chance of the dying stages when heading over an open goal. At full-time, as the rest of the ground drew breath, Lennon could be forgiven a sigh of relief.