This, like many years previous, could possibly be the biggest game in the SPFL season. Especially in deciding the potential ending of the season and who the title ends up with. The second Old Firm derby of the season sees Rangers host Celtic at Ibrox!
Rangers come into this one unbeaten all season winning 19 and drawing only two. A win here could take them 19 points clear at the top of the table and make the 55th title look more and more likely.
Celtic have struggled more than normal this season. Only one lost game though this season – losing only to Rangers in the reverse fixture. With 3 games in hand this could be a huge game for them as they play catch up.
Before kick off a minute of silence takes place. This the 50 year anniversary of the Ibrox disaster.
The players then once again take the knee for Black Lives Matter.Embed from Getty Images
3″ A great early chance for Celtic. Odsonne Edouard has a good chance and forces a good double save from Allan McGregor. Celtic putting the pressure on Rangers early.
4″ Alfredo Morelos involved here getting stuck in as we so often see in these games. Goes in late right in front of Neil Lennon who screams for a foul. No booking but possibly lucky to get away with one there.
6″ Mistake from Leon Balogun forces another chance for Celtic. Leigh Griffiths this time with the shot and another very good save from McGregor.
Opening ten minutes Celtic have dominated not allowing Rangers to get out of their own half. No chances as of yet for Rangers. Celtic looking the better side.
13″ Another attempt for Celtic. Nice play as the ball ends up with Callum McGregor. His shot on goal goes just wide of the mark. Celtic coming close again.
After scoring 45 goals this season it would make sense that they score here today. Only Rangers have scored more this season. Could we see a large scoreline come the end of this one?Embed from Getty Images
Celtic continue to press high and dominate the play. They will feel safe in how they are playing. It is just a case of getting the ball in the back of the net now.
Contrast to this Rangers will be disappointed with their start. Somebody needs to take control and something needs to change. No shots in the opening 20 minutes is unlike them.
22″ Griffiths has a shot outside the box again and forces an unreal save from McGregor yet again. His save turns the ball onto the post. The best effort of the game so far.
You would think that with a full stadium the tide of this game could turn. The backing of the noise in this one might push for Celtic to actually score and Rangers to improve. The empty stadium maybe not helping either side.Embed from Getty Images
Rangers giving the ball away a lot here with the Celtic pressure getting to them almost every time. Steven Gerrard probably needs to look to change the team up with no shots in the opening 30 minutes of the game.
36″ Chance after chance really from Celtic which they will think positively of. Griffiths yet again with a shot but this time just wide. They will think that they can get something here so long as they continue the pressure. Rangers struggling .
39″ First yellow card of the game goes to Steven Davis. Just clipping Kristoffer Ajer on the break.
40″ Another yellow card here. Ismaila Soro goes into the book. In roughly on Borna Barisic.
45″ Late chance for Celtic in the first half. Corner comes in and Nir Bitton wins the header. Wide of the mark again. If Celtic could score some of these chances it could be perfect for them.
HALF TIME! Rangers 0-0 Celtic
The first half has been interesting and somewhat surprising from a Rangers point of view. Celtic have been excellent and absolutely dominant. Celtic’s only flaw really this half has been not taking some of these chances. McGregor the only thing standing in their way after making some brilliant saves.
Rangers need to improve. They haven’t been playing like they have all season. Poor passing with their worst passing accuracy in the league so far (70%) and not creating any real chances whatsoever. They will still feel that there is a chance having kept the score at 0-0. The leading scorers (56 goals) and the best defence (5 goals conceded) will surely give them some confidence heading into the second half.
We could be in for a tight second half here and if it is anything like the first half we may see Celtic just scrape it. We can’t underestimate Rangers though who will have to change it up and improve for the rest of this game.
Second Half Kicks Off!
50″ First real chance for Rangers of the game and of the half. Ianis Hagi off the bench has a go from outside the box which goes just wide. A bit of positivity from Rangers. They will need to build on this.
56″ Rangers starting to play the ball round a bit better here and Hagi has looked good since coming onto the pitch. A shot from Morelos gets blocked and the resulting corner brings nothing. Bit of hope here though for Rangers who are looking more into this second half.
59″ Griffiths and Edouard linking up well and creating a great chance for Celtic to take a lead. Denied superbly by Balogun after a last ditch challenge.
RED CARD! Bitton sees red. Morelos is through in on goal and is taken down rashly. Very poor from him and Celtic are down to ten men. Could this be the changing point here?Embed from Getty Images
Rangers playing much more positively now. The red card will give them confidence that they can produce here.
69″ Freekick from Barisic after James Tavernier was brought down. He struck it well but Shane Duffy gets a block on it and it goes out for a corner.
70″ GOAL! Rangers 1-0 Celtic. The resulting corner ends in a goal. Joe Aribo wins the header well and it comes off McGregor’s head and into the back of the net. As soon as they start looking positive and stronger they score and are one step closer to increasing this remarkable lead at the top of the table.Embed from Getty Images
74″ Huge chance for the equaliser. Mohamed Elyounoussi with a volley from outside the box goes just over the bar.
75″ A foul on Ryan Kent by Shane Duffy brings a bit of a heated argument between both sides players. 3 players coming away with yellow cards – Morelos, Duffy and McGregor.Embed from Getty Images
With ten minutes left to play this game has been interesting. Still everything to play for with Celtic still looking dangerous. Rangers need to be strong and try to hold on. Maybe push for a second to guarantee the victory.
82″ Cedric Itten has a chance after Celtic lose the ball again. Hit well but just over the bar. Adds to the pressure Celtic now face in this game. Both sides could do with a goal here.
90″ Celtic putting pressure on as the game comes to an end. Tom Rogic has a shot that goes over the bar thanks to a deflection. The resulting corner comes to nothing.
Four minutes added on and this could be a very stressful last 4 minutes for Rangers.
FULL TIME! Rangers 1-0 Celtic
Rangers best Celtic after an interesting game. Celtic played well and dominated but the real changing point in this one was the red card for Bitton. An own goal from McGregor and Rangers pick up all three points. Rangers fail to register a shot on target for the entire 90 minutes but they won’t care as they come away with the win.
Rangers now go an outstanding 19 points clear at the top of the table and remain unbeaten all season. Surely now they are on course for yet another league title. Next up for them is another tough game against Aberdeen as they look to pull further and further away at the top.
Celtic will be disappointed and after this are looking less and less likely to catch up. They have three games in hand on Rangers but even with wins in all three they are looking for a near miracle. Next up for them is Hibernian where they will desperately need a win if they want to pull off an outstanding comeback. Unfortunately for them it might be just too far out of reach now.
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