Scottish Premiership
CelticCeltic2HamiltonHamilton Academical0

Celtic 2-0 Hamilton Academical

By Richard WilsonBBC Scotland at Celtic Park

Moussa Dembele scored twice against Hamilton Academical to give Celtic a 21st straight Premiership victory.

The visitors, sitting bottom of the table, had limited the leaders to a Stuart Armstrong strike against the woodwork until Dembele struck.

The French striker curled home a superb shot on the stroke of half-time.

Dembele scored his second after 59 minutes from the penalty spot after Kieran Tierney was brought down by Massimo Donati.

Celtic's 15th consecutive win in all competitions means they retain their 24-point lead over Aberdeen, who beat Ross County.

Accies remain one point behind Inverness Caledonian Thistle, who had lifted themselves off the bottom with Friday's win over Rangers.

Dembele makes difference

Celtic were in command of this game, but that alone was not enough to overcome Hamilton.

The visitors were disciplined, well-organised and spirited, while their hosts lacked the edge and intensity that has distinguished the best of their work this season.

The game became a test of Celtic's patience until Dembele delivered a moment of improvisation and exquisite technique.

Spinning on the ball then dragging it past Massimo Donati, he made room 25 yards from goal then lifted a shot over Hamilton goalkeeper Gary Woods and into the far corner of the net.

It was striking enough for goalkeeper Craig Gordon to wait for his team-mate at the side of the pitch as the players left at half-time and congratulate him.

Dembele almost added a second early in the second half, but his shot from Tierney's cross was deflected wide.

The Celtic full-back still managed to create a goal for Dembele, though, being brought down inside the area for a penalty that the French striker converted calmly.

Hamilton suffer familiar tale

Celtic's Moussa Dembele is replaced with Leigh Griffiths
Moussa Dembele was replaced with Leigh Griffiths, who was returning from injury

Not for the first time this season, much of Hamilton's play was solid and dependable.

They set up to contain Celtic and their work was diligent and thorough enough to frustrate the home side.

Darian MacKinnon was typically bullish in central midfield, while Danny Redmond kept trying to prompt counter-attacks from deep positions.

Steven Boyd, a graduate of the club's youth academy, looked promising up front, but mostly Hamilton were trying to maintain their hold on a clean sheet.

Redmond did shoot wide early on and one break upfield ended with MacKinnon playing Dougie Imrie in, but he sliced his shot wide of the goal.

The visitors had a claim for a penalty late on, when Gramoz Kurtaj went down inside the area, but the Hamilton forward was booked for diving instead.

Just before the end, Eamonn Brophy also had a header tipped over by Gordon.

Hamilton were bottom of the table before kick-off and there is no sense of panic at the club, but this was a difficult day for the visitors.

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers: "When teams sit in that deep, it's always difficult. For spells in the first half we closed up our own space a little too much - that was just our positioning really.

"We still have moments where we could find the final pass a little bit better, but right on half-time an absolutely brilliant goal by Moussa. The boy oozes quality, he has wonderful finishing, and I think that was his first one from outside the box, so he's continually working on that.

"His movement was good, he's improving all the time in the setting up of his game. He's always a threat, he wants to score. His contribution was very high.

"Defensively we were outstanding, how quickly we won the ball back. Overall, a very pleasing performance."

Hamilton Academical manager Martin Canning: "We stuck to our task, and we did well, but it takes that moment of quality from Dembele to open the scoring.

"At that point the plan was working to frustrate Celtic, and when we had counterattack opportunities our quality maybe wasn't as good as it could have been. I was really pleased with the players' attitude, they worked hard.

"You can take a lot from it. They've competed with the best team in the country. It's always going to be difficult going toe-to-toe with Celtic because they've got quality players who can hurt you.

"You've got to come here with a plan of keeping your shape and being disciplined and organised. We did that very well and the concentration levels were great. There were positives to take into Tuesday's game against Aberdeen."



Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Gordon
  • 12Gamboa
  • 20Boyata
  • 28Sviatchenko
  • 63Tierney
  • 6Bitton
  • 8Brown
  • 49ForrestSubstituted forMackay-Stevenat 10'minutes
  • 14S ArmstrongSubstituted forMcGregorat 85'minutes
  • 11Sinclair
  • 10DembeleSubstituted forGriffithsat 72'minutes


  • 2K Touré
  • 3Izaguirre
  • 9Griffiths
  • 16Mackay-Steven
  • 24de Vries
  • 42McGregor
  • 53Henderson


Formation 4-4-2

  • 34Woods
  • 3SkondrasBooked at 90mins
  • 4DevlinBooked at 15mins
  • 21DonatiBooked at 59mins
  • 23McMann
  • 10RedmondSubstituted forKurtajat 69'minutesBooked at 78mins
  • 6Gillespie
  • 18MacKinnon
  • 7Imrie
  • 15BinghamSubstituted forBrophyat 76'minutes
  • 30BoydSubstituted forDochertyat 64'minutes


  • 1Matthews
  • 2Seaborne
  • 8Docherty
  • 12Kurtaj
  • 16Watson
  • 20Brophy
  • 39Adams
Crawford Allan

Match Stats

Home TeamCelticAway TeamHamilton
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Celtic 2, Hamilton Academical 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Celtic 2, Hamilton Academical 0.

  3. Post update

    Corner, Hamilton Academical. Conceded by Craig Gordon.

  4. Post update

    Attempt saved. Eamonn Brophy (Hamilton Academical) header from very close range is saved in the top centre of the goal.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Leigh Griffiths (Celtic).

  6. Post update

    Dougie Imrie (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  7. Booking

    Giannis Skondras (Hamilton Academical) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  8. Post update

    Foul by Giannis Skondras (Hamilton Academical).

  9. Post update

    Scott Sinclair (Celtic) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  10. Substitution

    Substitution, Celtic. Callum McGregor replaces Stuart Armstrong.

  11. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Eamonn Brophy (Hamilton Academical) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

  12. Post update

    Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Giannis Skondras.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Nir Bitton (Celtic).

  14. Post update

    Dougie Imrie (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Booking

    Gramoz Kurtaj (Hamilton Academical) is shown the yellow card.

  16. Post update

    Gramoz Kurtaj (Hamilton Academical) has gone down, but that's a dive.

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Hamilton Academical. Eamonn Brophy replaces Rakish Bingham.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Leigh Griffiths (Celtic).

  19. Post update

    Scott McMann (Hamilton Academical) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  20. Substitution

    Substitution, Celtic. Leigh Griffiths replaces Moussa Dembele.

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