At the press conference following their 4-0 defeat of Rangers, Celtic coach Brendan Rodgers praised his team for a great win. In his softly spoken manner, he said that Celtic had played well and taken their chances. He stressed they had the edge in what is always a tough game. However, he would not be drawn on their chances of a unique triumph, despite Celtic remaining on course for successive trebles.
Celtic Remain on Course for Successive Trebles
Rangers far too Passive
The Old Firm Scottish Cup semi-final at Hampden started badly for Rangers and got worse. Their coach, Graeme Murty, when asked his reaction afterwards, said “words are not enough”. Clearly, his team never got close enough to Celtic in the first half. Murty acknowledged they were far too passive and never deserved to get anything from the game. It was later evident that there were some very angry Rangers players inside their dressing room and some very upset fans in the stands. The Gers coach recognised the fans’ support and apologised for the performance. He understood their reaction – the team didn’t do enough to make them stay around. Most had left well before the match ended.
At the other end of Hampden the Celtic fans were singing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ in celebration. The Hoops had benefited from Rangers’ passivity through Tom Rogic and Callum McGregor (following a bad error by Russell Martin) in the first period. Two second-half penalties, the first a confident chip by Moussa Dembele, sealed the victory. Rangers had to endure the dismissal of young defender Ross McCrorie and a period of Celtic keep-ball. The only positive they could take was some near misses by Colombian forward Alfredo Morelos.
Million Dollar Question – How Can Celtic be Caught?
The one-sided outcome left the Rangers management with, as Graeme Murty described it, the million dollar question. How to get closer to their bitter rivals; while in the east end of Glasgow, Celtic remain on course for successive trebles. Having already secured the League Cup and closing in on the League title, few would bet against them.