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Page last updated at 14:35 GMT, Sunday, 20 February 2011

Celtic   3 - 0   Rangers

By Keir Murray

Celtic took a significant step towards the Scottish Premier League title with a clinical defeat of their old rivals.

Gary Hooper delighted the home fans with the opening goal in 17 minutes, accelerating past David Weir and firing through keeper Allan McGregor's legs.

Then Emilio Izaguirre's surging run and delicious cross set up Hooper to fire home from six yards on 28 minutes.

Rangers rarely threatened and Commons' swerving shot from 22 yards sealed a comprehensive win.

The teams scarcely needed familiarity to breed contempt but, with this being their fourth of seven meetings this season in league and cups, there was a danger that tempers could flare.

Predictably, the match began at breakneck pace.

Kyle Bartley was one of three players brought into the Rangers team by manager Walter Smith - Steven Naismith and Nikica Jelavic the others - but the on-loan Arsenal youngster was in referee Iain Brines' book after only two minutes for a late sliding challenge on Celtic captain Scott Brown.

El Hadji Diouf was the instant target of goading from the home fans and the occasional Celtic player and he was part of a five-man midfield that helped to force Celtic on to the back foot in the opening exchanges without ever threatening Fraser Forster's goal.

Georgios Samaras was re-instated to partner Hooper up front for Celtic. The Greek had scored twice at Ibrox on 2 January but was on the bench for the 2-2 draw in the Scottish Cup two weeks ago.

Yet it was the English striker who had the Celtic fans in raptures with two goals in 11 first-half minutes.

The first was a prime example of control and finishing.

Twenty yards from goal Hooper took a pass from Commons on the left and with one touch knocked it past veteran defender David Weir, the contrast in pace described by Radio Scotland commentator David Begg as being "like an express train going by an old puffer".

One-on-one with McGregor, he cracked a low shot through the Rangers keeper's legs to put his team ahead.

Gary Hooper scores his second for Celtic
Hooper connects with Izaguirre's cross to double Celtic's lead

Rangers pushed Celtic back briefly after the goal and Diouf's dangerous ball from the left into the six-yard box, though narrowly missed by Maurice Edu and Nikica Jelavic, offered the visiting fans some hope.

But in 28 minutes Hooper slid the ball home to double Celtic's advantage.

Izaguirre broke clear down the left and delivered an inviting ball across goal that was met by Hooper on the six-yard line.

Rangers were stung and their play was disjointed. Steven Davis and Maurice Edu were their central midfielders and while the former's crosses into the box lacked accuracy, the American's performance was below par.

At half-time Smith replaced the injured Steven Naismith with Kyle Lafferty and the Northern Ireland striker set up his team's best chance of the game up to that point when in 50 minutes he cut in from his left-midfield berth and floated a ball on the toe of Diouf, now playing up front.

The on-loan Blackburn striker controlled the ball beautifully and tried to lob Fraser Forster but the 6ft 7in keeper managed to tip the effort away from goal.

That chance followed one for Celtic, when Samaras's cross was flapped away by McGregor on to the head of Brown, whose nod towards goal was cleared off the goal-line by Sasa Papac.

Rangers' attacking pairing threatened again when, in 56 minutes, Diouf crossed from the right but the Croatian Jelavic headed a yard wide.

Smith sent on David Healy to replace Diouf, who had been looking more dangerous in an advanced role.

Within moments, though, Commons secured the points with 20 minutes to play.

Hooper supplied the pass for the Scotland international who switched the ball from his left to his right, evading Madjid Bougherra, and hit a swerving shot past the wrong-footed McGregor from 22 yards.

As the din cascaded round the ground, Lafferty set up Jelavic but he knocked a shot wide of Forster's goal from 18 yards.

Ki Sung-Yeung, who had replaced the limping Kayal on the hour mark, stung McGregor's palms with a rasping shot as Celtic looked to intensify their rivals' suffering.

In the final minutes Commons and Hooper took the applause of the home fans as James Forrest and Anthony Stokes were given a run-out.


Live text and stats

 

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Scottish Premier

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Celtic 3-0 Rangers FT
(HT 2-0)
  • Hooper 17
  • Hooper 28
  • Commons 70

    Celtic

    • 26 Forster
    • 03 Izaguirre
    • 05 Majstorovic
    • 12 Wilson
    • 21 Mulgrew
    • 08 Brown
    • 16 Ledley
    • 33 Baram Kayal yellow card (Ki Sung-Yeung 60)
    • 09 Samaras
    • 15 Commons (Forrest 82)
    • 88 Hooper (Stokes 85)

    Substitutes

    • 24 Zaluska,
    • 04 Juarez,
    • 25 Rogne,
    • 18 Ki Sung-Yeung,
    • 20 McCourt,
    • 10 Stokes,
    • 49 Forrest

    Rangers

    • 01 McGregor
    • 03 Weir yellow card
    • 05 Papac
    • 16 Whittaker
    • 21 Bartley yellow card
    • 24 Bougherra yellow card
    • 07 Edu
    • 08 Davis
    • 14 Naismith (Lafferty 46 yellow card)
    • 17 Diouf yellow card (Healy 68)
    • 18 Jelavic

    Substitutes

    • 25 Alexander,
    • 12 Foster,
    • 20 Weiss,
    • 10 Fleck,
    • 11 Lafferty,
    • 15 Healy,
    • 41 Hutton
    Ref: BrinesAtt: 58,748
    CELTIC
    RANGERS

    Possession

    • Celtic 60%
    • Rangers 40%

    Attempts on target

    • Celtic 6
    • Rangers 2

    Attempts off target

    • Celtic 2
    • Rangers 7

    Corners

    • Celtic 6
    • Rangers 7

    Fouls

    • Celtic 7
    • Rangers 18
    • Final Result
    • Full Time
    • 90:00+3:11 The referee signals the end of the game.
    • 90:00+2:37 Short corner worked by Sung-Yeung Ki.
    • 89:28 David Weir concedes a free kick for a foul on Georgios Samaras. Daniel Majstorovic takes the direct free kick.
    • 89:28 Booking The referee shows David Weir a yellow card.
    • 88:19 The referee blows for offside against Madjid Bougherra. Free kick taken by Fraser Forster.
    • Correction - 87:41 Corner taken by Steven Davis from the right by-line, Maurice Edu takes a shot. Mark Wilson manages to make a clearance.
    • 87:41 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Steven Davis from the right by-line, David Weir takes a shot. Clearance by Mark Wilson.
    • 86:14 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mark Wilson by Kyle Lafferty. Daniel Majstorovic restarts play with the free kick.
    • 86:14 Booking Kyle Lafferty is booked.
    • 85:26 Free kick awarded for a foul by Steven Whittaker on Anthony Stokes. Direct free kick taken by Georgios Samaras.
    • 84:24 Shot from 30 yards from Sung-Yeung Ki. Save by Allan McGregor. Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Sung-Yeung Ki, Steven Whittaker makes a clearance.
    • 84:24 Substitution Gary Hooper leaves the field to be replaced by Anthony Stokes.
    • 81:46 Kyle Lafferty challenges Scott Brown unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Sung-Yeung Ki.
    • 81:08 Substitution James Forrest joins the action as a substitute, replacing Kris Commons.
    • 79:53 Unfair challenge on Emilio Izaguirre by Madjid Bougherra results in a free kick. Kris Commons delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from left wing, clearance by Kyle Lafferty. Short corner taken by Sung-Yeung Ki.
    • 77:45 Corner from the right by-line taken by Steven Davis, Mark Wilson makes a clearance.
    • 75:01 Nikica Jelavic produces a left-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
    • 74:42 Foul by Sung-Yeung Ki on Steven Davis, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by David Weir.
    • 72:42 Shot from inside the area by Nikica Jelavic clears the bar.
    • 71:52 Kyle Bartley gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Scott Brown. Georgios Samaras restarts play with the free kick.
    • 69:44 Gary Hooper provided the assist for the goal.
    • 69:44 GOAL - Kris CommonsCeltic 3 - 0 Rangers Kris Commons scores a goal from just outside the area to the bottom right corner of the goal. Celtic 3-0 Rangers.
    • 68:33 Steven Whittaker challenges Emilio Izaguirre unfairly and gives away a free kick. Charlie Mulgrew takes the direct free kick.
    • 67:31 Outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Steven Davis, save made by Fraser Forster.
    • 67:31 Substitution David Healy on for El-Hadji Diouf.
    • 65:12 Madjid Bougherra challenges Georgios Samaras unfairly and gives away a free kick. Kris Commons crosses the ball in from the free kick.
    • 65:12 Booking Madjid Bougherra goes into the book.
    • 63:52 Charlie Mulgrew crosses the ball, save by Allan McGregor.
    • 62:42 Kris Commons fouled by Steven Davis, the ref awards a free kick. Sung-Yeung Ki crosses the ball in from the free kick, clearance by Steven Whittaker. Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Kris Commons.
    • 61:37 Kris Commons fouled by Steven Davis, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Charlie Mulgrew.
    • 60:46 Kris Commons fouled by Madjid Bougherra, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Charlie Mulgrew.
    • 59:37 Substitution Sung-Yeung Ki comes on in place of Beram Kayal.
    • 57:58 Shot from outside the box by Beram Kayal goes wide right of the target.
    • 57:34 Free kick awarded for a foul by Maurice Edu on Georgios Samaras. Direct free kick taken by Georgios Samaras.
    • 55:53 Maurice Edu concedes a free kick for a foul on Beram Kayal. Daniel Majstorovic takes the direct free kick.
    • 55:13 A cross is delivered by El-Hadji Diouf, Nikica Jelavic has a headed effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the right of the goal.
    • 54:08 Corner taken right-footed by El-Hadji Diouf.
    • 51:49 El-Hadji Diouf takes a shot. Save by Fraser Forster.
    • 49:50 Georgios Samaras produces a cross, save by Allan McGregor. Scott Brown takes a shot. Sasa Papac makes a clearance. Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Kris Commons from the right by-line, clearance made by Kyle Bartley.
    • 49:16 Beram Kayal gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on El-Hadji Diouf. Maurice Edu takes the direct free kick.
    • 47:37 Emilio Izaguirre concedes a free kick for a foul on El-Hadji Diouf. The free kick is swung in right-footed by El-Hadji Diouf, save by Fraser Forster.
    • 46:22 Steven Davis produces a cross, Headed effort from inside the area by Nikica Jelavic misses to the right of the goal.
    • 45:01 The referee blows his whistle to start the second half.
    • 45:01 Substitution Kyle Lafferty joins the action as a substitute, replacing Steven Naismith.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+0:46 The referee blows for half time.
    • 44:55 Unfair challenge on Emilio Izaguirre by Steven Whittaker results in a free kick. Fraser Forster takes the direct free kick.
    • 44:32 A cross is delivered by Madjid Bougherra, clearance by Charlie Mulgrew.
    • 43:01 The assistant referee signals for offside against Georgios Samaras. Indirect free kick taken by Madjid Bougherra.
    • 42:23 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Maurice Edu by Georgios Samaras. Free kick taken by Steven Whittaker.
    • 39:45 The ball is swung over by Steven Whittaker.
    • 38:15 Steven Naismith has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the left-hand post.
    • 37:53 Outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by El-Hadji Diouf, clearance made by Charlie Mulgrew.
    • 37:01 Maurice Edu fouled by Joe Ledley, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick crossed by Steven Whittaker, Joe Ledley makes a clearance.
    • 33:41 Nikica Jelavic takes a shot. Save by Fraser Forster.
    • 30:30 Kris Commons produces a right-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that misses to the left of the goal.
    • 29:57 Unfair challenge on Georgios Samaras by David Weir results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Charlie Mulgrew.
    • 28:52 Booking Beram Kayal goes into the referee's book.
    • 28:39 Booking El-Hadji Diouf shown a yellow card.
    • 27:36 Assist by Emilio Izaguirre.
    • 27:36 GOAL - Gary HooperCeltic 2 - 0 Rangers Gary Hooper scores a goal from close in to the bottom right corner of the goal. Celtic 2-0 Rangers.
    • 26:01 Mark Wilson fouled by El-Hadji Diouf, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick crossed by Kris Commons.
    • 21:35 The assistant referee flags for offside against Gary Hooper. Indirect free kick taken by Allan McGregor.
    • 21:03 David Weir challenges Georgios Samaras unfairly and gives away a free kick. Daniel Majstorovic restarts play with the free kick.
    • 20:27 Effort on goal by Nikica Jelavic from inside the penalty area goes harmlessly over the bar.
    • 19:22 Joe Ledley is ruled offside. Indirect free kick taken by Allan McGregor.
    • 16:42 Assist by Kris Commons.
    • 16:42 GOAL - Gary HooperCeltic 1 - 0 Rangers Gary Hooper finds the net with a goal from close range low into the middle of the goal. Celtic 1-0 Rangers.
    • 12:40 A cross is delivered by Steven Whittaker.
    • 10:41 Kris Commons takes the inswinging corner, clearance made by David Weir.
    • 10:15 Steven Whittaker produces a cross, clearance by Daniel Majstorovic.
    • 9:40 Maurice Edu fouled by Georgios Samaras, the ref awards a free kick. Maurice Edu takes the free kick.
    • 5:57 Corner taken by El-Hadji Diouf from the left by-line.
    • Correction - 5:12 Corner taken by El-Hadji Diouf from the right by-line.
    • 5:12 Outswinging corner taken by El-Hadji Diouf,
    • 4:22 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on El-Hadji Diouf by Emilio Izaguirre. Allan McGregor takes the free kick.
    • 2:50 Kyle Bartley challenges Scott Brown unfairly and gives away a free kick. Kris Commons fires a strike on goal direct from the free kick.
    • 2:50 Booking Kyle Bartley booked for unsporting behaviour.
    • 0:00 The match begins.

    Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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    Scottish Premier results

    20 Feb 2011 23:59 UK


    Scottish Premier table snapshot

    As it stood on 20 Feb 2011 23:59 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    1 Celtic 26 44 64
    2 Rangers 24 30 56
    3 Hearts 26 19 54
    4 Kilmarnock 26 5 36
    5 Motherwell 26 -5 34
    6 Inverness CT 26 3 33
    7 Dundee Utd 22 -3 29
    8 St Johnstone 24 -12 29
    9 Aberdeen 25 -15 26
    10 Hibernian 26 -17 25
    11 St Mirren 25 -21 19
    12 Hamilton 24 -28 14

    see also
    Celtic 'product' satisfies Lennon
    20 Feb 11 |  Celtic
    Smith dismayed by Rangers display
    20 Feb 11 |  Rangers
    Lennon suffers Old Firm fatigue
    18 Feb 11 |  Celtic
    Diouf will stay cool - Bougherra
    18 Feb 11 |  Rangers
    Brown & Diouf Old Firm re-match beckons
    18 Feb 11 |  Scottish Premier


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