Scottish Premiership
Ross County1Celtic4

Ross County 1-4 Celtic

Celtic regained their six-point lead at the top of the Premiership with a second-half double from Leigh Griffiths providing the platform for victory.

A brilliant Tom Rogic strike found the top corner to put the visitors ahead.

Griffiths demonstrated his quality by reacting fastest to defender Scott Boyd's slip to curl home, and he then converted a James Forrest cutback.

County gave themselves a chance when Tony Dingwall slotted home, but Nir Bitton's header ended the contest.

As well as a return to winning form following Europa League defeat by Molde in midweek, the Dingwall triumph was Celtic's fifth league win in a row, with nearest challengers Hearts having won on Saturday. County remain fifth, five points off St Johnstone in fourth.

Rogic stunner leads the way

The pattern was set early on with Ronny Deila's side enjoying possession and territory but unable to breach a well-organised and disciplined County side.

The best chance fell to the hosts' Liam Boyce as the striker connected with a header from eight yards, but he was off target.

A series of long-range efforts were the most Celtic could manufacture, but that eventually provided the catalyst to their opener.

Tom Rogic scores for Celtic against Ross County
Rogic's strike was the difference between the sides in the first half

Rogic received the ball from Celtic defender Mikael Lustig and sent a powerful left-foot shot that was instinctively struck sweeping past Gary Woods.

Set pieces offered Jim McIntyre's men their best opportunity and a well-worked corner gave Martin Woods plenty of space, but his execution was lacking.

Ross County midfielder Ian McShane broke into the Celtic box early in the second half but a heavy touch cost him dearly as the chance came to nothing.

Griffiths goals keep coming

Celtic reasserted their authority and Griffiths took a lovely touch in the box to create space for a shot, but Woods saved.

The pressure was mounting and when Griffiths seized on Boyd's mistake the inevitable occurred as he bent a lovely curling left-foot shot into the net.

Leigh Griffiths scores for Celtic against Ross County
The left-foot of Griffiths was once again the scourge of Premiership defenders

An 18th goal for the season for Griffiths arrived almost immediately. Forrest used all of his pace to outstrip the defence on the right and Griffiths was ill-advisedly left all alone to fire home.

The Premiership player of the month for October's target of 30-plus goals this season looks well within reach.

Forrest went close again when he cut inside, only to drag his shot narrowly wide.

At the other end, Michael Gardyne went close with an angled drive which Craig Gordon did well to tip round the post. From the corner, the ball fell to Boyd but once again the target was missed when a goal looked likely.

Celtic's unimpressive defending offered County some hope when they failed to clear from their own box. Dingwall was the beneficiary as he danced across the box and converted.

Jackson Irvine thought he had brought his side back into contention with a header that Gordon brilliantly tipped away.

Efe Ambrose then produced a last-ditch challenge to prevent Gardyne from touching home before Irvine missed with another header.

However, when Stuart Armstrong delivered a corner on to Bitton's head, the Israel midfielder settled the match by glancing the ball into the far corner.

It was a deserved three points for the champions but County might feel a marginally improved overall performance could have produced a tighter margin than a 4-1 defeat.

Line-ups

Ross County

  • 21Woods
  • 2Fraser
  • 6Robertson
  • 5Boyd
  • 12Foster
  • 26Woods
  • 7Gardyne
  • 36IrvineSubstituted forMurdochat 78'minutes
  • 8McShaneSubstituted forCurranat 59'minutes
  • 19Dingwall
  • 10BoyceBooked at 61minsSubstituted forSchalkat 67'minutes

Substitutes

  • 11Curran
  • 14Holden
  • 17Franks
  • 18Murdoch
  • 23Schalk
  • 24De Vita
  • 31Severn

Celtic

  • 1Gordon
  • 23Lustig
  • 20Boyata
  • 4Ambrose
  • 3Izaguirre
  • 25JohansenSubstituted forMackay-Stevenat 71'minutes
  • 6Bitton
  • 49Forrest
  • 18RogicSubstituted forMcGregorat 80'minutes
  • 14Armstrong
  • 9GriffithsSubstituted forCiftciat 80'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Ciftci
  • 16Mackay-Steven
  • 19Allan
  • 24Cole
  • 26Bailly
  • 42McGregor
  • 63Tierney
Referee:
Kevin Clancy
Attendance:
6,042

Match Stats

Home TeamRoss CountyAway TeamCeltic
Possession
Home35%
Away65%
Shots
Home12
Away16
Shots on Target
Home4
Away10
Corners
Home4
Away5
Fouls
Home8
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Ross County 1, Celtic 4.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Ross County 1, Celtic 4.

Attempt saved. Chris Robertson (Ross County) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Richard Foster (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stuart Armstrong (Celtic).

Attempt saved. Callum McGregor (Celtic) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Chris Robertson.

Attempt missed. Craig Curran (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right.

Attempt saved. Stuart Armstrong (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Callum McGregor replaces Tomas Rogic.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Nadir Ciftci replaces Leigh Griffiths.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Stewart Murdoch replaces Jackson Irvine.

Attempt missed. Alex Schalk (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

(Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Nir Bitton (Celtic).

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Chris Robertson.

Goal!

Goal! Ross County 1, Celtic 4. Nir Bitton (Celtic) header from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by Leigh Griffiths with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Michael Gardyne.

Tony Dingwall (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by James Forrest (Celtic).

Attempt saved. Tomas Rogic (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Foul by Craig Curran (Ross County).

Efe Ambrose (Celtic) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt saved. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Gary Mackay-Steven replaces Stefan Johansen.

Martin Woods (Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Stefan Johansen (Celtic).

Attempt missed. Jackson Irvine (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top right corner.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Efe Ambrose.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Craig Gordon.

Attempt saved. Jackson Irvine (Ross County) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Michael Gardyne (Ross County) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic).

Foul by Alex Schalk (Ross County).

Dedryck Boyata (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Alex Schalk replaces Liam Boyce.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Chris Robertson.

Attempt missed. Martin Woods (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top left corner.

Booking

Liam Boyce (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Liam Boyce (Ross County).

goal

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Sunday 8th November 2015

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic14112138112735
2Hearts1492326141229
3Aberdeen149142116528
4St Johnstone147252922723
5Ross County145361919018
6Hamilton145361820-218
7Dundee144642023-318
8Inverness CT144551517-217
9Kilmarnock144371524-915
10Motherwell144281118-714
11Partick Thistle142571020-1011
12Dundee Utd1422101028-188
View full Scottish Premiership table

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