ALL EYES were on Ibrox on Saturday September 3 2023 for an intriguing derby encounter as Brendan Rodgers became re-aquainted with all-Glasgow hostilities after an absence of over four and a half years.

The champions went into the confrontation in front of 50,000 partizan fans after failing to score a goal in their previous two outings, the 1-0 League Cup exit at Kilmarnock and the dull stalemate with struggling St Johnstone at Parkhead.

Rodgers was aware his team could not afford a slip in Govan and, thankfully, the only strike of a tense occasion was claimed by Kyogo Furuhashi on the stroke of half-time that left Michael Beale’s players on their knees.

WALLOP…Kyogo Furuhashi thunders in the first-time winner at Ibrox with home defender Connor Goldson getting a close-up view of the Celtic striker’s devastating qualities.

Matt O’Riley anticipated a loose clearance out of defence by Connor Goldson to thump a header into the path of the prolific Japanese raider. The hosts’ defence was split wide open as the Hoops hitman displayed perfect timing.

Kyogo smashed the ball first-time on the drop and the foes’ new keeper Jack Butland didn’t stand a chance as his effort zoomed low past him to his right. It was a goal fit to win any game and it gave the Hoops three precious points on this occasion.

Celtic’s ill-fated Champions League adventure got off to a faltering start when they crashed 2-0 to Dutch title winners Feyenoord 16 days after their success in Govan. New Bhoys Gustaf Lagerbielke and Odin Holm saw red in Rotterdam and not even a penalty-kick save from Joe Hart could prevent Rodgers’ side from an opening-day loss.

STOPPAGE-TIME WINNER…Matt O’Riley is walking on air as he slams the last-gasp points-clincher past Motherwell keeper Liam Kelly at Fir Park.

There was drama, too, at Fir Park at the end of an eventful month when midfield maestro O’Riley claimed a stoppage-time winner in a 2-1 triumph over battling Motherwell.

Honduran wide Bhoy Luis Palma collected his first goal for the Hoops with a low angled drive, but the hosts thought they had nicked a point early into the added-on time period.

Scott Bain, deputising for the banned Hart who had been sent off in the 3-0 win at Livingston the previous week, was helpless as Blair Spittal drilled in the equaliser.

O’Riley, though, had the final say with his superbly-judged finish right at the death.


September 3: Premiership: Rangers 0 CELTIC 1


September 16: PremiershipCELTIC 3 Dundee 0

Turnbull (pen), Kyogo, O’Riley

September 19: Champions League: Feyenoord 2 CELTIC 0

September 23: Premiership: Livingston 0 CELTIC 3

Hatate (pen), O’Riley, Maeda

September 30: Premiership: Motherwell 1 CELTIC 2

Palma, O’Riley

* TOMORROW: Don’t miss Diary of an Epic Season: October

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