Rangers’ wait for a silverware will have to wait for a little longer as they were peeped to the Scottish League Cup by perennial rivals Celtic on Sunday evening, the Ibrox team were defeated 1 nil in the 1st of line-up Old Firm derbies of the season.
It has been almost 8 years(2011 league and League Cup double) since Rangers last won a major honour and this season looks like The Teddy Bears are going to put an end to that drought due to the newfound belief in the camp and their competitiveness in the league so far, thanks to the tutelage of the Gaffer Steven Gerrard. The Scottish League Cup presented the 1st opportunity to match the belief with success, however, the holders, Celtic aren’t going to relinquish their Cup easily.
Celtic has dominated Scottish football for quite some time now, The Bhoys or Hoops are on a streak of a domestic treble(League Championship, the Scottish Cup, the Scottish League Cup)
since 2016, not even the loss of former manager Brendan Rodgers could derail the 3rd treble last season, Celtic manager Neil Lennon has sure picked up where he left it last season.
Cup competition or not, the Old Firm Derby has always been a keenly contested fixture between city rivals Rangers and Celtic including friendlies. Many have predicted this season’s fixtures particularly to potentially be the game-changer. It seems Celtic is not just winning the battle, she is on the path of winning the war too. The psychological effect of this defeat on Rangers may be fatal in subsequent meetings.
If history was anything to go by, Rangers should have carried the day. Rangers have played Celtic in 14 finals of the Scottish League Cup and have prevailed 9 times in contrast to Celtic’s 5, and if the 1st half performance was also put into reckoning, Rangers should have buried the game long before the break, however, Celtic’s goalkeeper Fraser Forster was in impeccable form, coming to his team’s rescue when called upon.
Against the run of play, Celtic took the lead just on the hour mark, Christopher Jullien(60′) scored from a well-placed freekick from teammate Ryan Christie. Rangers should have levelled 3 minutes later when Celtic was reduced to 10 men after Jeremie Frimpong brought down Rangers Alfredo Morelos in the box, however, the Colombian saw the resultant spot-kick saved by the inspired Celtic’s Fraser Forster.
Rangers threw everything they’ve got at Celtic for the remainder of the game but Celtic remained resolute in defending despite playing with a man down for about half an hour. Rangers striker Morelos is also guilty of squandering several golden chances.
It is now a 4th consecutive Scottish League Cup for Celtic, 10 consecutive domestic honours for the Hoops, spanning over just 3 and a half seasons. For Steven Gerrard and his lads, on the other hand, the battle has been lost, can they regroup to claim the war(league championship)?
Congratulations to Neil Lennon and Celtic, another dominant season beckons.
Thank you all for your time.