ANDREW VORCE - Monday, September 19, 2011
Rangers won the first Glasgow derby of the season to cement their status at the top of the Scottish Premier League.
The scoring got started in the 23rd minute as Kelvin Wilson's half clearance fell straight to the feet of Steven Naismith. Not needing a second invitation the clinical striker took his opportunity, settling the difficult clearance before smashing home past Fraser Forster.
Their lead lasted just over 10 minutes as Gary Hooper slotted past Allan McGregor in the 34th minute. Scott Brown picked out the front man with a through ball on the ground and Hooper did the rest, sending his shot to the back post.
McGregor will have nightmares about the next goal as Celtic went into the second half with a lead. Badr El Kaddouri picked up possession in the center of the field and took a gamble with a long range shot. The shot had pace but the fault lies completely on McGregor who could have easily saved the shot. The keeper muffed his chance and the ball slipped between his gloves and into the back of the net.
Ally McCoist must have pumped his men up at half time as Rangers came storming back. Nikica Jelavic clawed the home team back into it after a long Sasa Papac corner. Jelavic rose above the rest and his downward header was awkward for Forster as it's upward path was too much for the keeper to see things level in the 55th minute.
From that point on it was all Rangers as the boys in blue took over. Kyle Lafferty was fortunate enough to find his name on the score sheet after scuffing his first chance. A driven ball into the box was only half dealt with by Celtic's defense and even Lafferty's first attempt was only half blocked. After composing himself the front man slotted home in the 67th minute.
Naismith added a second in style after a similar ball came soaring into the Celtic penalty area. This time the finish was right, leaving no room for error the striker guided his first time finish past Forster after muscling past his defender in the 90th minute.
Defender Charlie Mulgrew was sent off for picking up two yellow cards, with Mark Wilson picking up the only other card in the game.
Alejandro Bedoya failed to make the bench for Rangers, but Carlos Bocanegra and Maurice Edu went the distance.
Dominic Cervi was not named to the Celtic bench who next face Ross County in the Scottish League Cup while Rangers play Falkirk in the same tournament.