Scottish League Cup
CelticCeltic3HeartsHeart of Midlothian0

Celtic 3-0 Heart of Midlothian

By Colin MoffatBBC Scotland
Highlights - Celtic 3-0 Hearts

Celtic eased into the last eight of the League Cup with victory over Hearts, who were made to pay for poor defending and wasting a couple of golden chances.

John Guidetti thrashed in the opening goal on 24 minutes during a period of Celtic dominance.

Either side of half-time, Jamie Walker hit the crossbar for Hearts and Osman Sow missed the target with a penalty.

Kris Commons then converted from the spot and Adam Eckersley knocked in an own goal from an Anthony Stokes cross.

Manager Ronny Deila chose a strong side for a tournament Celtic have not won since 2009, with Commons returning along with skipper Scott Brown, Craig Gordon and Stefan Johansen.

Interview - Celtic manager Ronny Deila

Stokes drilled an early shot narrowly wide for the hosts but it was Hearts, flying high at the top of the Championship, who settled into the more assured rhythm.

The visitors won three corners in quick succession, with only a lunging interception from Jason Denayer denying Sow a tap-in from Callum Paterson's low delivery.

Hearts defender Alim Ozturk then made a terrible mess of shielding the ball in his own penalty area, expecting Neil Alexander to gather and leaving Guidetti with just the goalkeeper to beat but the Swede swiped wide of the target.

Suddenly it was Celtic who were in the ascendancy and Paterson needed to block a Stokes effort, Denayer scuffed a shot into Alexander's arms and Commons also had a low shot saved.

Alexander did well to push away a thunderous 18-yard strike from Brown but the 36-year-old was soon beaten.

Emilio Izaguirre delivered a great, deep cross from the left and Hearts skipper Danny Wilson could only divert the ball into the path of Guidetti, who thumped the ball home from 10 yards via the post for his first goal since joining on loan from Manchester City.

Guidetti almost had a second goal when he diverted a low shot from Callum McGregor. Alexander was deceived but Eckersley was on the line to clear.

With Celtic now in control, another excellent Izaguirre delivery flashed across goal to cannon off the shins of Morgaro Gomis and it needed an instinctive save from Alexander to prevent an own goal.

Kris Commons cracked in a penalty for Celtic
Kris Commons drilled home a penalty for Celtic on 57 minutes

Hearts were presented with a fantastic opportunity on the stroke of half time as an errant pass from Stokes allowed Walker to race in behind the Celtic defence. The midfielder cracked a shot beyond Gordon from the edge of the penalty area only to see it hammer back off the crossbar.

An even better chance came the Edinburgh side's way early in the second half when referee Willie Collum pointed to the spot as Sow toppled under pressure from Virgil van Dijk.

Sow's fall appeared to owe more to his own clumsiness but the striker could not profit from the gift and blazed an appalling penalty high over the crossbar.

Just moments later, Commons showed Sow how to score from 12 yards, lashing the ball low into the corner following Ozturk's overly robust shoulder charge on Guidetti.

And the game slipped beyond Hearts' reach on the hour when Eckersley chose to use his chest to cushion a Stokes cross and inadvertently steered the ball into his own net from six yards.

Alexander needed to save close-range efforts from Stokes and Izaguirre, who was a menace down the left flank all evening.

The Honduras full-back cut into the penalty area with 10 minutes remaining but his shot from a tight angle did not match his earlier good work.

Aleksandar Tonev had earlier touched in a shot from fellow substitute Stefan Scepovic from an offside position but could not make amends as his late shot fizzed just wide.

Celtic manager Ronny Deila: "I'm very pleased, I think we're going in the right direction all the time now.

"What I'm most pleased about is two things. One we worked as a team, eleven players who wanted to win the ball and work together.

"And two we are started to create something on the sides.

"I think it's important to keep consistency in the team because if you change too much as I've done twice then we haven't played well and I can understand why."

Hearts head coach Robbie Neilson: "I thought the game hinged on the penalty.

"We went 1-0 down but still stayed strong. We miss the penalty and the game totally changed from there, they go up the park and get a penalty and it's very difficult when the crowd starts getting behind them, the atmosphere changes and they start getting confidence.

"I'm pleased with the performance overall. Disappointed with the result - at the end of the day the league's the main thing for us and gear up now for Sunday."



Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 26Gordon
  • 4Ambrose
  • 22DenayerBooked at 4minsSubstituted forO'Connellat 46'minutesBooked at 86mins
  • 5van Dijk
  • 3Izaguirre
  • 8Brown
  • 25Johansen
  • 42McGregorSubstituted forTonevat 72'minutes
  • 15Commons
  • 10Stokes
  • 9GuidettiSubstituted forScepovicat 64'minutes


  • 6Bitton
  • 12Scepovic
  • 24Zaluska
  • 27Tonev
  • 28Griffiths
  • 33Kayal
  • 34O'Connell


Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Alexander
  • 2Paterson
  • 4Wilson
  • 5OzturkBooked at 56mins
  • 44Eckersley
  • 6Gomis
  • 17Buaben
  • 7WalkerSubstituted forKeatingsat 78'minutes
  • 18CarrickSubstituted forHoltat 64'minutes
  • 11Nicholson
  • 20SowSubstituted forEl Hassnaouiat 78'minutesBooked at 86mins


  • 3McHattie
  • 8Robinson
  • 9El Hassnaoui
  • 10Holt
  • 15Gallacher
  • 19Keatings
  • 30McGhee
William Collum

Match Stats

Home TeamCelticAway TeamHearts
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Celtic 3, Heart of Midlothian 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Celtic 3, Heart of Midlothian 0.

  3. Post update

    Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Efe Ambrose.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Scott Brown (Celtic).

  5. Post update

    Prince Buaben (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. Aleksandar Tonev (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

  7. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Anthony Stokes (Celtic) right footed shot from long range on the left is blocked.

  8. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Soufian El Hassnaoui (Heart of Midlothian) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

  9. Booking

    Soufian El Hassnaoui (Heart of Midlothian) is shown the yellow card.

  10. Post update

    Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Soufian El Hassnaoui (Heart of Midlothian).

  12. Booking

    Eoghan O'Connell (Celtic) is shown the yellow card.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Eoghan O'Connell (Celtic).

  14. Post update

    James Keatings (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Hand ball by Soufian El Hassnaoui (Heart of Midlothian).

  16. Substitution

    Substitution, Heart of Midlothian. James Keatings replaces Jamie Walker.

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Heart of Midlothian. Soufian El Hassnaoui replaces Osman Sow.

  18. Post update

    Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Stefan Johansen.

  19. Post update

    Foul by Anthony Stokes (Celtic).

  20. Post update

    Callum Paterson (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick on the left wing.