Scottish Premiership
Celtic4Ross County0

Celtic 4-0 Ross County

Celtic moved clear at the top of the Premiership with a comfortable victory over Ross County.

Manager Brendan Rodgers made five changes after the midweek Champions League exertions, and three of the players brought into the side scored.

Tom Rogic delivered the opener with a left-foot finish, and Moussa Dembele, making his first start since July, added the second before half-time.

James Forrest secured the win after the break, scoring twice in 22 minutes.

Rodgers' side lost 5-0 to Paris St-Germain on Tuesday, but there was no diminishing their domestic authority.

As well as the three goalscorers, Nir Bitton and Jonny Hayes came into the side, with Rodgers lining Celtic up in a 3-1-4-2 formation that allowed Dembele to partner Leigh Griffiths up front.

Celtic winger James Forrest
Celtic winger James Forrest scored twice in the second half as the champions overcame Ross County

Ross County would have been expecting a backlash from Celtic - and they got it. It was a bit of a slow-burner, though. Celtic were at their best only sporadically and yet still they were full value for their four-goal win. As they piled it on at the end, it could have been five or six.

They went ahead with a goal from the dominant Rogic. It was a soft one, a shot that beat County goalkeeper Aaron McCarey at his near post.

Forrest might have made it two not long after, but he pulled his shot wide. For their part, County had a chance through Alex Schalk, but Craig Gordon made the save.

Tony Ralston thumped a shot off the post just before the break, but that second goal came within two minutes, Dembele scoring it with a curling finish from the left edge of the penalty box. His goal apart, the striker was rusty and will take a few weeks to get back to his best, but this was an important first step for him.

Ross County goalkeeper Aaron McCarey
Ross County goalkeeper Aaron McCarey endured a difficult afternoon at Celtic Park

County manager Jim McIntyre made changes early and his team started the second half in more ambitious form, pushing men forward and almost earning a reward. Six minutes into the new half they had a double chance and were denied both times by Gordon.

Craig Curran, a half-time substitute, had the first, Gordon pushing it away. The loose ball fell to Davis Keillor-Dunn, who thumped his effort on goal only for Gordon to fling himself in its path and knock it clear. Outstanding stuff from the Celtic goalkeeper.

If County were sickened at that missed opportunity, what happened next finished them off completely.

A Rogic shot was parried by McCarey straight into Forrest's path and the midfielder could not miss from close range. He added a second 16 minutes before the end, cutting in from the right and drilling a shot across the County goalkeeper.

Line-ups

Celtic

  • 1Gordon
  • 56Ralston
  • 6Bitton
  • 5Simunovic
  • 49Forrest
  • 18Rogic
  • 8Brown
  • 14ArmstrongSubstituted forMcGregorat 60'minutes
  • 15Hayes
  • 10DembeleSubstituted forEdouardat 59'minutes
  • 9GriffithsSubstituted forSinclairat 75'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Roberts
  • 11Sinclair
  • 21Ntcham
  • 22Edouard
  • 23Lustig
  • 24de Vries
  • 42McGregor

Ross County

  • 31McCarey
  • 3Naismith
  • 2Fraser
  • 15Davies
  • 28van der Weg
  • 7Gardyne
  • 17DraperSubstituted forCurranat 45'minutes
  • 40Keillor-DunnSubstituted forDowat 57'minutes
  • 6KellySubstituted forChowat 45'minutes
  • 25O'BrienBooked at 47mins
  • 10Schalk

Substitutes

  • 1Fox
  • 8Chow
  • 9Dow
  • 11Curran
  • 19Mikkelsen
  • 22Mckay
  • 42Tumilty
Referee:
Steven McLean
Attendance:
58,624

Match Stats

Home TeamCelticAway TeamRoss County
Possession
Home70%
Away30%
Shots
Home30
Away7
Shots on Target
Home9
Away5
Corners
Home7
Away3
Fouls
Home10
Away9

Live Text

Match ends, Celtic 4, Ross County 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Celtic 4, Ross County 0.

Attempt missed. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) header from the right side of the six yard box is too high.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Tim Chow.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Tim Chow.

Attempt blocked. Tomas Rogic (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Attempt blocked. Odsonne Edouard (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Jason Naismith.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Aaron McCarey.

Attempt saved. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Attempt saved. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Foul by Anthony Ralston (Celtic).

Ryan Dow (Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Michael Gardyne (Ross County) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Attempt missed. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.

Attempt missed. Nir Bitton (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Scott Sinclair replaces Leigh Griffiths.

Goal!

Goal! Celtic 4, Ross County 0. James Forrest (Celtic) left footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Odsonne Edouard.

Attempt saved. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Foul by Jonny Hayes (Celtic).

Michael Gardyne (Ross County) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Attempt missed. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Jonny Hayes (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Jason Naismith (Ross County).

Attempt blocked. Odsonne Edouard (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt saved. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Tim Chow (Ross County).

Attempt missed. Tim Chow (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Callum McGregor replaces Stuart Armstrong.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Odsonne Edouard replaces Moussa Dembele.

Attempt missed. Scott Brown (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left following a set piece situation.

Attempt blocked. Stuart Armstrong (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Tim Chow (Ross County).

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Ryan Dow replaces Davis Keillor-Dunn because of an injury.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Davis Keillor-Dunn (Ross County) because of an injury.

Attempt blocked. James Forrest (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Attempt blocked. Moussa Dembele (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic65101631316
2Aberdeen6420116514
3Rangers6321138511
4St Johnstone6321117411
5Motherwell6312109110
6Hibernian6231111019
7Hearts622257-28
8Hamilton62131011-17
9Dundee6114714-74
10Ross County6114513-84
11Partick Thistle6024712-52
12Kilmarnock6024410-62
View full Scottish Premiership table

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