Scottish Premiership, Ibrox Stadium - Rangers 0 Celtic 2 (Rogic 50, Griffiths 65)
Celtic were comfortable winners of the first Old Firm derby of the season as goals from Tom Rogic and Leigh Griffiths provided them with a 2-0 victory over Rangers.
Brendan Rodgers’ side, who came into the game on the back of a 45-game unbeaten run, dominated large spells of the first half but failed to find a break-through until after the restart.
In fact, Rangers should probably have had a penalty after only 12 minutes when Alfredo Morelos was clipped by Jozo Simunovic. However, the referee wasn’t interested and Celtic took the initiative in the second period when, after Rangers failed to clear from a corner, Rogic hammered in the opening goal.
The hosts responded well but Morelos spurned their best opportunity and minutes later goalkeeper Wesley Foderingham was picking the ball out of his net for the second time, Griffiths doubling the advantage after being played through by Patrick Roberts.
Substitute Moussa Dembele missed a chance to add a late third and Celtic had to settle with just the two-goal win.
The win moves Celtic five points clear of second-placed Aberdeen and eight points ahead of arch-rivals Rangers with only seven games of the Scottish Premiership played.
Celtic’s gulf in class shows once more: It is obvious Rangers do not possess the quality they used to in years gone by and this performance was a reminder to manager Pedro Caixinha of just how much ground his team have to make up to catch their enemy
MAN OF THE MATCH
Patrick Roberts (Celtic): The winger tormented marker Lee Hodson on the right channel throughout as he created numerous chances for his team mates, grabbing a well deserved assist when he played through Griffiths for Celtic’s second.
Rangers: Foderingham 7, Tavernier 5, McCrorie 6, Cardoso 6, Hodson 5, Candeias 6, Dorrans 5, Jack 5, Pena 4, Windass 6, Morelos 6. Subs: Nemane N/A, Miller 5, Herrera 5.
Celtic: Gordon 7, Lustig 7, Simunovic 7, Boyata 6, Tierney 7, Brown 7, Armstrong 7, Roberts 8, Rogic 8, Sinclair 7, Griffiths 8. Subs: Dembele 6, McGregor 6, Forrest 6.
2’ - ROGIC GOES CLOSE! Not even a minute is on the clock and Celtic are almost on the scoresheet. Rodic surges forward and lashes a fierce shot which is destined for the top corner but Foderingham does brilliantly to get a fingertip to the effort and tip it over.
12’ - PENALTY SHOUT! Windass plays through Morelos whose trailing leg is clipped by Simunovic but the referee isn't interested in Rangers' appeal. It is a clumsy tackle and Celtic have got away with one.
33’ – GOOD SAVE TO DENY ROGERS! The Celtic winger skips by Hodson far too easily on the channel, he breaks into the penalty area and tries to squeeze the ball through the legs of Foderingham from a tight angle but the Rangers goalkeeper does well to make the block.
50’ – GOAL: CELTIC ARE AHEAD! Rangers can only partially clear from a Celtic corner. The loose ball falls kindly for Roberts who shoots from the edge of the penalty area. It's blocked, but Rangers still can't clear and Rogic makes them pay. He smashes his shot into the top corner!
54’ - GREAT SAVE FROM GORDON! Morelos should score from the subsequent corner. He has a wonderful opportunity to level the scores but heads it at Gordon who makes a great block from only a few yards out.
65’ – GOAL: CELTIC DOUBLE THEIR LEAD! The visitors double their advantage with a goal slightly against the run of play! Roberts surges forward, plays a lovely reverse pass into space for Griffiths who slides the ball into the bottom corner.
90’+2 – NEARLY A THIRD! Tierney's drills a low cross to the back post but the unmarked Dembele can't quite reach it to apply the finish.
Celtic extend their unbeaten run to 46 league matches (W41 D5) and 57 games in domestic competition (W52 D5).