Join The Fun And Win Big At Dafabet: India’s Best Online Casino For Sports Bettors And Gamers – Celtic dominated the first Old Firm derby of the season as they beat Rangers 4-0 to open up a five-point lead at the top of the Scottish Premier League.
Ange Postecoglou’s side were on top from start to finish as Rangers could not match the intensity and speed of their fiercest rivals. The match was effectively over at half-time as Celtic already had a 3-0 lead.
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Liel Abada opened the scoring after just eight minutes, coming off his marker to finish in the box, and Celtic doubled their lead on the half-hour when Jota chipped past Jon McLaughlin.
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Abada added his second, and Celtic’s third, before the break as the home side ran out, outplayed and outplayed a bewildered Rangers side.
Giovanni van Bronckhorst made an attacking change at half-time, but this could not prevent Celtic adding four on 78 minutes when David Turnbull finished under McLaughlin following a mistake by the Rangers goalkeeper.
Kyogo Furuhashi picked up a shoulder injury after just three minutes, making him a doubt for Celtic’s Champions League opener against Real Madrid next week, but that was the only negative for the Hoops.
Celtic have now won all six of their opening Scottish Premier League games this season, scoring 25 times in the process. They may have lost their stride after the early loss of Kyogo through injury, but the Hoops are still in devastating form as they went four goals past their rivals.
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Abada’s movement makes him a danger in the opposition penalty area with Jota a threat as a creator and finisher. Celtic also had Giorgios Giakoumakis and Daizen Maeda on the bench to maintain the intensity of their play in the second half. It was a display of attacking power.
Rangers played well and got what they got. However, questions will be asked of McLaughlin after a shaky performance by the goalkeeper. He actually could have done better with the first three goals, all of which came at the age of 34, and the fourth was absolutely nailed.
The Celtics defender and goalkeeper were faced with difficult ball decisions due to their high-pressing style, but McLaughlin still had to find his Rangers teammate with a pass from the back. Rangers have made the decision not to sign a new goalkeeper during the summer transfer window. He might regret it now.
Celtic were so dominant in this game that Postecoglou could be forgiven for turning his attention to next week’s Champions League group stage opener against Real Madrid. On the basis of this performance, the Scottish champion is ready for the highest level of the European game.
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Postecoglou will need to adopt a more conservative approach to get results in the Champions League, but Celtic have the talent to make an impact in the competition. The Hoops want Kyogo back and fit enough to play against Real Madrid. His absence will be a blow.
90 + 2 mins: FULL TIME: Celtic 4-0 Rangers. What a performance by Celtic. They were dominant from start to finish and the final score reflected this. Answer: The most damning thing about Rangers is that it could have been more than just four, it’s one-sided.
89 min: BOOKED – Goldson and Giakoumakis. Goldson was booked for a cynical foul on Maeda to stop the counterattack and Giakoumakis was booked for his reaction.
88 min: Followed by Hart! Tavernier cuts in a free-kick in the penalty area, Goldson gets in with a header, but Hart tips the post.
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85 min: Sakala opts to take on two or three Celtic defenders in the box on his own, but he rushes out at the end and pretty much sums up how Rangers have played this game. No cohesion, no sign of the system. Celtic, on the other hand, have played as a team.
82 min: There will be a real inquiry after this result and Rangers’ performance. He had been very poor. This would put Celtic five points clear at the top of the Scottish Premier League.
78 minutes: GOAL! Celtic 4 (78′ Turnbull) Rangers 0 – What a gift! McLaughlin sent the ball straight to Turnbull and the Celtic midfielder slotted a finish under the Rangers keeper who only had himself to blame! A real shock!
77 min: Juranovic … over the bar! Space opened up for Juranovic 20 meters from goal, but the right side of Celtic poured the finish over the goal!
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75 min: Celtic play from a difficult position in the middle of the pitch with Mooy spraying a pass down the right. The ball came off the edge, but Sands intervened. Giakoumakis is desperate to add his name to the scoresheet!
71 min: Morelos trailed far! The pass was played over the top for the Rangers striker, the angle was tight for Morelos and he curled it well at the far post, much to the delight of the Celtic support. Morelos is not a popular figure in the east of Glasgow!
70 mins: Celtic need to do some defensive work here as Rangers try to find a way back into this game, but the home side still feel comfortable. Rangers have been very toothless in the attacking front so far tonight.
68 min: Barisic, not for the first time in this game, gets a good delivery into the box from the left, but Morelos and Wright make the save and the chance slips away for Rangers.
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64 minutes: Hatate takes the ball in the center circle, turns and drives towards goal. Rangers slowly closed in on him, but the Celtic midfielder cut high and wide of the goal when he was able to test McLaughlin.
62 min: Celtic have lost intensity in this second half and it’s no surprise that Postecoglou has made some changes to his team. Australia have many options on the bench.
60 min: Rangers substitutes – Colak and Tillman OFF, Morelos and Arfield ON. Van Bronckhorst made two changes and Morelos returned to the pitch for Rangers for the first time after being controversially left out of the squad for the match against PSV Eindhoven.
57 mins: Sub Celtic – Starfelt OFF, Jenz ON. It’s a change we expect and Jenz will play the last 30 minutes of this match.
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55 minutes: BOOKING – Starfelt. Starfelt has actually been ordered to eavesdrop in the incident earlier in the play, but now it seems the Celtic centre-back should come loose. He took the damage.
54 min: Starfelt go down and it looks like the game could be over. Celtic have sent on Jenz to warm up and that seems to have changed.
51 min: Colak has a chance to widen the field on the break, but he gets no help from his fellow Rangers and Celtic crowd out the Croatian striker.
48 min: Celtic played at an incredible level for the first 45 minutes. There was intensity and purpose to the game, but could it last for 90 minutes? The Rangers have to hope there are opportunities for him in this second round.
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46 min: The second half is on! Rangers have made one change – Wright for Kamara. It’s an offensive change!
45+2 minutes: HALF TIME: Celtic 2-0 Rangers. Celtic have been incredible in this first half. They play matches at a higher pace than their rivals. Abada has two and Jota has one. This match could be over!
45 mins: There will be two minutes of stoppage time at the end of the first half.
43 mins: BOOKING – Carter-Vickers. The referee withdrew play for Carter-Vicker’s foul on Kent and the American received a yellow card.
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41 minutes: GOAL! Celtic 3 (41′ Jota) Rangers 0 – It’s the third! Taylor had time and space on the left to take the ball into the middle and found Abada at the back post and the Celtic winger went in through the legs of McLaughlin! The Hoops are flying in this first round!
40 min: ONE MILLION… saved! It was a great chance for Celtic to score their third after winning the ball in midfield, but McLaughlin made a crucial save with his feet to prevent the Portuguese winger from finding the back of the net!
39 min: Giakoumakis pulls the ball into the danger area for the man at the back post to attack, but Jota can’t convert and Rangers escape with one. Celtic have played this first round very quickly!
37 mins: Colak nodded! The Rangers striker rose high to flick a cross into the box from six yards, but couldn’t handle it and Colak steered his effort over the bar! He has had two good chances to score now.
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35 mins: Again,
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