It’s hard to say, was this the easiest game against Newco, easier than either of the 5-1 wins last season? Was it our easiest game against both the Rangers group of clubs? I think it might have been. There were some games back in the early 80s I recall, but none finished with a four goal advantage. What about 7-1? I hear you say. Sure, but I am assured the gap between the teams in 1957 was poorly illustrated by that game.
Make it a matter of record, at no point have Newco been further behind Celtic on or off the field, not even when we won the Premiership under Ronny and they finished third in the Championship, or in a lower league.
The closest we came to conceding was from serial-threat-to-Craig Gordon, Mikael Lustig, who spectacularly sliced a ball against the crossbar. Craig pulled off another three fine saves within a few moments of that incident, with the score at 3-0 and Celtic apparently napping. But honestly, this was our most dominant game of the season.
Tom Rogic, Callum McGregor and Moussa Dembele each like a goal against that lot and they filled their boots yesterday. McGregor and Rogic both finished coolly with their weaker foot. Ironically, McGregor benefited when Russell Martin clumsily tried to clear with his stronger, right foot, a ball which should have been played with his left.
Scott Brown deservedly won plaudits but Olivier Ntcham was irresistible. His expertly taken penalty was a fitting reward for the way he dominated the central area of the field.
Referee Bobby Madden went into Brian McGinley territory (careful now) and awarded Celtic two penalties against teams from Ibrox. They were both stonewallers but you and I know that doesn’t always mean they are awarded – so well played to the ref.
I don’t watch much of Newco, but based on what I have seen, this Morelos character is one of the worst strikers ever to pull on a blue jersey. How he manages to make a living in the game when he finds putting the ball in the net from inside six yards so difficult is a mystery.
You will have noticed fluctuations in Celtic’s form this season. They have looked short of inspiration against the likes of Hamilton, but you will also note that they peak at the right times, like the finely-tuned athletes they are. Brendan had this date marked in his card since observing, “Be careful for what you wish for”, in response to news this semi-final draw was celebrated at Ibrox.
They will not be looking forward to their trip to Celtic Park in two weeks.