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Celtic 1 Rangers 0: Ntcham inflicts Gerrard's first Rangers defeat

03 September, 2018, 16:59 | Author: Lora Ball
  • Former Netherlands midfielder Aron Winter holds the slip of Rangers FC during the draw for UEFA Europa League football tournament at The Grimaldi Forum in Monaco

The players the manager has brought in have only been together for two, three months.

He said: "We have got quality all over the park. It's frustrating that it's a clear foul". "We have got to go on another run now. Obviously, Thursday night was a big moment - the first thing we've achieved together as a team".

Having parried a Callum McGregor - who was excellent throughout - free-kick, the Rangers keeper then aimed his boot at Ajer as the Celtic defender closed in on goal.

Gerrard made two changes from Russian Federation with Borna Barisic and Kyle Lafferty coming in for Jon Flanagan and Daniel Candeias.

While the scoreline was far more respectable for the visitors than on their last visit to Celtic Park when Celtic sealed the title with a 5-0 rout in May, there was little change in the general flow of the game from Rodgers' first two seasons in which Celtic have pummelled Rangers on their way to back-to-back domestic trebles.

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A Frenchman sealing a Celtic victory in a game against Rangers has been a recurring narrative around these parts for some time.

Both clubs named as substitutes one of their two new signings made in the dying embers of the transfer window, namely Filip Benkovic for Celtic and Joe Worrall for Rangers.

Forrest smacked the bar in the 33rd minute with a deflected 30-yard drive and from the resultant corner Lustig's header from a Dedryck Boyata flick-on also hit the bar with Rangers scrambling to clear their lines.

His ball across goal found the advancing Ntcham who calmly slotted into the net to give Celtic the goal their possession had threatened.

After striking the crossbar three times, the hosts finally got the breakthrough they deserved after 62 minutes as a flowing counter-attack saw James Forrest send a cool pass across goal for Olivier Ntcham to deliver the decisive blow.

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And, according to the Rangers' manager, fourth official John Beaton had reacted to Tom Rogic's tackle on Ryan Jack by shouting "foul, foul, foul" into his mic, though, amidst the hullabaloo, it would have been understandable if referee Willie Collum was unable to hear.

Sixty seconds later however Alfredo Morelos nearly produced an equaliser out of thin air when he overpowered Dedryck Boyata on the left only to see his angled drive turned wide by Craig Gordon.

Gerrard had not utilised any substitutes until the eightieth minute when he introduced Glenn Middleton for Ryan Jack.

Time eventually ran out on a Rangers side who arguably offered their opponents too much respect whilst also surely feeling the effects of that long and tiring journey to Russian Federation.

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