Scottish Premiership
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Rangers 2-0 Celtic: Steven Gerrard's side secure second home win over champions

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Highlights: Rangers 2-0 Celtic

Rangers secured back-to-back home wins over Celtic for the first time in seven years with a dominant and determined display against the Scottish champions.

Steven Gerrard's side got the ideal start as James Tavernier's free-kick deceived goalkeeper Scott Bain with only two minutes gone at Ibrox.

Celtic were left angry as Jon Flanagan escaped with a yellow card for an elbow in the face of Scott Brown.

Rangers took advantage as Scott Arfield finished off a fine, flowing move.

The derby win takes the hosts to within six points of their city rivals, but with the title already returning to Celtic Park, it more importantly was a signal of intent ahead of next season as Rangers secured a sixth consecutive win.

It also ends Celtic's 12-game unbeaten run since Valencia ended their Europa League hopes - and a run of 16 without loss in the league since their December defeat at Ibrox.

Celtic rattled, Rangers rampant

While the title was long won by the visitors, there is no such thing as a meaningless Old Firm derby and there was still plenty more on the line as the players emerged into a sun-kissed Ibrox.

Neil Lennon is still trying to win a permanent contract with Celtic after taking over as interim manager following Brendan Rodgers' departure to Leicester City.

Counterpart Gerrard is out to prove both his worth in his first managerial job - and that the December win over their city rivals was no flash in the pan. It didn't take long for the former England captain's side to take an early lead and help his case.

Tavernier had already found the net 16 times this season - 14 from the penalty spot - before the right-back's in-swinging free-kick whipped past Bain as it skimmed clear of a sea of heads and nestled in the far corner of the net.

Celtic were rattled. Shorn of the injured James Forrest and Kieran Tierney, rested ahead of the Scottish Cup final, and adopting a back three, Lennon's side lacked the width to trouble a blue tide feverishly chasing down anything resembling a Celtic shadow.

Gerrard had decided against restoring top scorer Alfredo Morelos to the starting line-up on the Colombian's return from a suspension resulting from his red card in the last Old Firm derby.

In his absence, Jermain Defoe, the veteran on loan from Bournemouth, has formed a fruitful partnership with Arfield and the pair responded by giving the Celtic backline a torrid afternoon.

Defoe's dummy after Glen Kamara cleverly shrugged off Brown to thread a ball towards the Celtic penalty box set up the former Burnley midfielder to slot home the second goal.

Rangers fans spill on to the park as their side score the second
Rangers fans spill on to the park as their side score the second goal of the game

Oliver Burke should have reduced the arrears late on when goalkeeper Wes Foderingham was able to beat away the on-loan West Bromwich Albion winger's close-range drive, which was Celtic's first shot on target after 83 minutes.

However, it seemed like the only thing that was going to prevent a Rangers win was a return to the indiscipline that led to three players being sent off for clashes involving Brown in that March defeat at Celtic Park.

Indeed, referee Kevin Clancy, taking charge of his first Old Firm derby, could have changed the course of the game had he decided on a harsher punishment for Flanagan after the defender's forearm smash in the Celtic captain's face as they awaited a corner with just a goal in the game.

The talk before kick-off was about Rangers' decision not to give Celtic a guard of honour in their first game since retaining an eighth consecutive title.

Lennon's side certainly not did deserve one in the wake of a disjointed performance as Rangers enjoyed a deserved ovation from home support encouraged by what may lie ahead next season.

Rangers 'totally dominant'; 'Black mark' against Lennon

Former Rangers striker Billy Dodds on BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound

Rangers totally dominated. I expected a response from Celtic and it didn't materialise. They were well beaten.

Rangers overran the Celtic midfield. They couldn't handle Davis, Arfield, Kamara and Jack.

The only talking point that might have changed the game was at 1-0 and then Flanagan throws his left arm into Brown and maybe a red card might have changed it - because Celtic certainly weren't going to change it.

BBC Scotland chief sports writer Tom English

That's the best I've seen Rangers play in years. They nullified Celtic's threat brilliantly. There was an energy, a wit and confidence about them that Celtic couldn't live with. It was a very complete Rangers performance.

There will be changes this summer, but on that performance, you wouldn't be changing much about that Rangers team. If they can get Ryan Kent on another season-long loan from Liverpool, what a difference that can make.

This is a big black mark against Neil Lennon and his chances of getting the job permanently because his team were beaten in every department.

Line-ups

Rangers

  • 13Foderingham
  • 2Tavernier
  • 6Goldson
  • 19Katic
  • 15FlanaganBooked at 51mins
  • 8Jack
  • 18Kamara
  • 10DavisSubstituted forMcCrorieat 90'minutes
  • 37ArfieldBooked at 64minsSubstituted forCandeiasat 83'minutes
  • 14Kent
  • 9DefoeSubstituted forMorelosat 79'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Worrall
  • 16Halliday
  • 17McCrorie
  • 20Morelos
  • 21Candeias
  • 31Barisic
  • 32Firth

Celtic

  • 29Bain
  • 23LustigSubstituted forToljanat 45'minutes
  • 5Simunovic
  • 35AjerBooked at 76mins
  • 73JohnstonSubstituted forSinclairat 66'minutes
  • 8Brown
  • 18RogicSubstituted forNtchamat 71'minutes
  • 42McGregor
  • 15HayesBooked at 74mins
  • 22Edouard
  • 25Burke

Substitutes

  • 2Toljan
  • 6Bitton
  • 11Sinclair
  • 21Ntcham
  • 24de Vries
  • 32Benkovic
  • 56Ralston
Referee:
Kevin Clancy
Attendance:
49,844

Match Stats

Home TeamRangersAway TeamCeltic
Possession
Home43%
Away57%
Shots
Home11
Away3
Shots on Target
Home5
Away1
Corners
Home6
Away3
Fouls
Home12
Away12

Live Text

Match ends, Rangers 2, Celtic 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Rangers 2, Celtic 0.

Attempt missed. Jozo Simunovic (Celtic) header from the centre of the box misses to the right following a set piece situation.

Jonny Hayes (Celtic) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Daniel Candeias (Rangers).

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Ross McCrorie replaces Steven Davis.

Kristoffer Ajer (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Daniel Candeias (Rangers).

Attempt missed. Ryan Kent (Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

Callum McGregor (Celtic) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Alfredo Morelos (Rangers).

Foul by Kristoffer Ajer (Celtic).

Daniel Candeias (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Oliver Burke (Celtic) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Daniel Candeias replaces Scott Arfield.

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

Foul by Alfredo Morelos (Rangers).

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Alfredo Morelos replaces Jermain Defoe.

Jermain Defoe (Rangers) hits the bar with a left footed shot from the centre of the box.

Attempt saved. Jermain Defoe (Rangers) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Booking

Kristoffer Ajer (Celtic) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Kristoffer Ajer (Celtic).

Ryan Kent (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Ryan Kent (Rangers) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a corner.

Booking

Jonny Hayes (Celtic) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Jonny Hayes (Celtic).

Scott Arfield (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Callum McGregor (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Steven Davis (Rangers).

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Olivier Ntcham replaces Tomas Rogic.

Foul by Glen Kamara (Rangers).

Tomas Rogic (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. James Tavernier (Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Ryan Kent (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Scott Brown (Celtic).

Ryan Kent (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Tomas Rogic (Celtic).

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Scott Sinclair replaces Michael Johnston.

Booking

Scott Arfield (Rangers) is shown the yellow card for excessive celebration.

Goal!

Goal! Rangers 2, Celtic 0. Scott Arfield (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Glen Kamara.

goal

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Sunday 12th May 2019

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic37266575195684
2Rangers37239581255678
3Kilmarnock371810948301864
4Aberdeen371971155431264
5Hibernian3714121150371354
6Hearts37156164148-751
7St Johnstone37157153846-852
8Motherwell37146174354-1148
9Livingston371111154041-144
10Hamilton3686222673-4730
11St Mirren3668222964-3526
12Dundee3756262975-4621
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