Celtic cemented their place as the only Big Dogs in Scottish fitba' with a 2-1 win over Rangers, our first win at Ibrox since 2011, which takes our lead at the top of the league to 19 points with a game in hand.
Brendan Rodgers picked his strongest available team, which meant Dembele replacing Griffiths up front, Simunovic and Sviatchenko at the back and McGregor in for the injured Rogic.
Rangers began the game as they had to, at 100 MPH, and quickly took the game to Celtic, getting a corner in the opening minutes. We found it hard to get to grips with the game, and were letting Barrie McKay dictate proceedings, and it wasn't a surprise when they took the lead in the 13th minute, a mistake from Sviatchenko gifting the ball to Kenny Miller, which lead to Tavernier pass in to he unmarked Miller who slid the ball home. Poor defending all round, particularly from big Erik with the initial mistake and Izaguirre who failed to stop Tavernier's cross.
Shortly after that Scott Brown was booked, but that incident seemed to turn the tide and give Celtic a foothold in the game, and we slowly started to get to grips with it.
Our first real chance came when Rangers' ridiculous high-line went to pieces and presented Scott Sinclair with a chance, his shot hitting the inside of the post and going for a corner. The equaliser came from the resulting corner, as Dembele was left unmarked by Danny Wilson and he smashed an unstoppable shot into the top corner, for his fifth goal against Rangers in three games and his 19th goal of the season, vindicating Brendan Rodgers' decision to start him
So the half-time score was 1-1, and Brendan must have been angry at the players for their indifferent first half display, as they came out on fire at the start of the second half.
Firstly Dembele stumbled over the ball when it seemed easier to score, then the quiet James Forrest was played in by Sinclair but his effort was saved by Foderingham, then a great cross from McGregor was hit on the half volley by Dembele against the bar, with Sinclair putting the rebound in the side netting, our midfield runners were ripping Rangers apart and we really should have scored a couple of goals. The goal inevitably came in the 70th minute, as sub Patrick Roberts played in the outstanding Stuart Armstrong and his ball across the box and was finished by the unmarked Sinclair, and Celtic were deservedly in the lead.
We should have scored more , as a fine move put Armstrong through but his shot was saved by Foderingham, then another shot from the fine haired one was deflected wide by Wilson when it seemed net bound. Rangers' only real chances came from a breakaway from a corner which ended with Miller hitting the post and Sviatchenko making up for his earlier error by taking the ball off Forrester's toes when he was practically clean through.
The match ended with Celtic keeping the ball and winning corners and free-kicks and generally taking the piss, and the final whistle brought scenes of great celebrations.
Celtic didn't even play that well and were comfortable winners, a sign of how far ahead we are of our 'nearest' rivals. The stand out player for us once again was Stuart Armstrong, who ran all over Rangers in the second half and really should have had a goal, Sinclair, Dembele and eventually Brown also had good games, with Simunovic probably the best of the defenders, Lustig was quite poor and was given a hard time by McKay, who was probably Rangers' standout player, which isn't saying much.
Brendan Rodgers must be delighted with the season so far, and we go into the winter break in fine fettle, with a team transformed since the crap of April's Scottish Cup semi-final. As for Rangers, good luck in trying to stay relevant, losers.
You can listen to a review of the game featuring myself and some other bloke(A hero, some would say - ed) on the latest GIGPOD podcast, and the blog will be back next week with some transfer talk.
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