Scottish Premiership
Partick Thistle1Celtic4

Partick Thistle 1-4 Celtic

Leigh Griffiths (left) and Stuart Armstrong and Erik Sviatchenko
Celtic went 11 points clear at the top of the Premiership

Celtic eased aside Partick Thistle at Firhill to increase their lead at the top of the Premiership to 11 points.

Stuart Armstrong tapped in from Leigh Griffiths' ball across goal.

After half-time Celtic scored twice in a minute, Armstrong's long-range shot added to by Griffiths taking advantage of Adam Barton's error.

Liam Lindsay headed a consolation, but Celtic continued to press and Callum McGregor finished Emilio Izaguirre's cut-back.

Partick had limited Celtic to a few half-chances in the opening 40 minutes, the champions never looking in danger of conceding but not exactly moving at their fluent best.

From a contest, though, Celtic opened up in the space of eight minutes either side of the break. Having defended well for much of the half, Thistle switched off just before half-time. Griffiths slid a ball in from the left and Armstrong was the only alert man in the six-yard box, driving home a close-range finish.

The second came when Griffiths rolled a free-kick into Armstrong's path, who then curled it beyond goalkeeper Tomas Cerny. Armstrong was a key man again for the visitors but Cerny was unconvincing when trying to keep out his effort.

Last season's 40-goal man has had his thunder stolen by Moussa Dembele since he got injured back in August. This was only his third start since then and his goal - and his earlier assists - would have come as blessed relief.

The one that made it 3-0 came only a minute after Armstrong's second and it was about determination, awful defending and class finishing. He mugged Barton of possession on the right-hand side of the penalty area, spun away from him impudently and then whipped his shot past Cerny. Cheeky and ruthless.

Callum McGregor scores Celtic's fourth
Callum McGregor scores Celtic's fourth

On the hour, Lindsay got his head on the end of free-kick and sent a diagonal effort across and beyond Craig Gordon. Celtic had gone to sleep at the back.

Bizarrely, the same thing happened again five minutes later - another Partick free-kick, another free header, from Sean Welsh. Welsh was just offside, but Celtic's concentration levels had deserted them again.

Celtic have scored four or more goals in half of their league games so far this season. Their fourth here was a while coming - they had chances to do it earlier - but they eventually found their way through again.

Dembele was on the field by then, playing up front with Griffiths - just what Partick didn't want to see - but it was Izaguirre, the full-back, who did the damage and not the strikers, and it was McGregor who thumped it home.

That was their 43rd league goal in 14 games and it all meant that their lead at the top of the Premiership stretched out to 11 with two games in hand over second-placed Rangers.

Post-match reaction

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Interviews: Alan Archibald and Brendan Rodgers

Partick Thistle manager Alan Archibald: "We made it tough for ourselves. You can't give good sides goals. We struggled with the basics tonight, they got in behind us with a couple of long balls and that was the disappointment. Good sides can cut you open but I thought we gave them goals.

"We got into good positions but we didn't do anything with it. You've got to have that belief and we didn't have that tonight."

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers: "I don't think Partick Thistle have conceded more than two goals in a game this season. On the back of Tuesday night [away to Manchester City] with only two days recovery, to come here and play to that level was exceptional really.

"You give Partick credit tonight, they made it really difficult, but the mentality in the team is very strong. I can see the development, the relationship between training and the game, they are taking on board the concepts of our build-up play and consolidating the game and then we've obviously got goals in the team.

"We're staying very composed and calm under pressure and that's a really good sign."

Line-ups

Partick Thistle

  • 1Cerny
  • 3Booth
  • 5Lindsay
  • 13Barton
  • 23GordonBooked at 36mins
  • 4Welsh
  • 6Osman
  • 14Elliott
  • 10ErskineSubstituted forLawlessat 58'minutes
  • 7AmooSubstituted forEdwardsat 57'minutes
  • 9DoolanSubstituted forAzeezat 76'minutesBooked at 80mins

Substitutes

  • 11Lawless
  • 15Devine
  • 16Azeez
  • 18Wilson
  • 19Edwards
  • 20McDaid
  • 35Stuckmann

Celtic

  • 1Gordon
  • 3Izaguirre
  • 28Sviatchenko
  • 23Lustig
  • 12Gamboa
  • 8Brown
  • 16Mackay-StevenSubstituted forChristieat 58'minutes
  • 14Armstrong
  • 18RogicSubstituted forMcGregorat 59'minutes
  • 27RobertsSubstituted forDembeleat 76'minutes
  • 9Griffiths

Substitutes

  • 2K Touré
  • 6Bitton
  • 10Dembele
  • 17Christie
  • 20Boyata
  • 24de Vries
  • 42McGregor
Referee:
Craig Thomson
Attendance:
7,609

Match Stats

Home TeamPartick ThistleAway TeamCeltic
Possession
Home39%
Away61%
Shots
Home4
Away15
Shots on Target
Home1
Away6
Corners
Home1
Away5
Fouls
Home13
Away13

Live Text

Match ends, Partick Thistle 1, Celtic 4.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Partick Thistle 1, Celtic 4.

Sean Welsh (Partick Thistle) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Leigh Griffiths (Celtic).

Adebayo Azeez (Partick Thistle) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Erik Sviatchenko (Celtic).

Attempt missed. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is close, but misses to the left.

Foul by Callum Booth (Partick Thistle).

Callum McGregor (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Christie Elliott (Partick Thistle).

Scott Brown (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Goal!

Goal! Partick Thistle 1, Celtic 4. Callum McGregor (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Emilio Izaguirre.

Booking

Adebayo Azeez (Partick Thistle) is shown the yellow card.

Adebayo Azeez (Partick Thistle) has gone down, but that's a dive.

Attempt missed. Ryan Christie (Celtic) header from very close range misses to the left.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Liam Lindsay.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Adam Barton.

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

Substitution

Substitution, Partick Thistle. Adebayo Azeez replaces Kris Doolan.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Moussa Dembele replaces Patrick Roberts.

Foul by Ryan Edwards (Partick Thistle).

Scott Brown (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Ryan Edwards (Partick Thistle) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Scott Brown (Celtic).

Foul by Ryan Edwards (Partick Thistle).

Erik Sviatchenko (Celtic) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Stuart Armstrong (Celtic) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is just a bit too high.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Tomás Cerny.

Attempt saved. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the top left corner.

Attempt missed. Patrick Roberts (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top left corner.

Abdul Osman (Partick Thistle) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Stuart Armstrong (Celtic).

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Liam Lindsay.

Goal!

Goal! Partick Thistle 1, Celtic 3. Liam Lindsay (Partick Thistle) header from the left side of the box to the top right corner. Assisted by Sean Welsh.

Kris Doolan (Partick Thistle) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Erik Sviatchenko (Celtic).

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Callum McGregor replaces Tomas Rogic.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Ryan Christie replaces Gary Mackay-Steven.

Substitution

Substitution, Partick Thistle. Steven Lawless replaces Chris Erskine.

Substitution

Substitution, Partick Thistle. Ryan Edwards replaces David Amoo.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic14131043123140
2Rangers168532117429
3Aberdeen1583428151327
4Hearts1676331191227
5St Johnstone156452219322
6Kilmarnock164571529-1417
7Ross County163761728-1116
8Hamilton152941721-415
9Motherwell154382027-715
10Dundee164391422-815
11Partick Thistle163581826-814
12Inverness CT163582132-1114
View full Scottish Premiership table

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