Celtic beat Rangers at Ibrox in first Old Firm derby of the season

Glasgow's big two met at Ibrox on Saturday for the first derby of the 23/24 season.

Celtic beat Rangers at Ibrox in first Old Firm derby of the season SNS Group

Celtic have won the first Old Firm game of the season as they beat Rangers 1-0 at Ibrox.

The Hoops move back to the top of the league with the victory against their city rivals that puts them four points clear of Michael Beale’s side

Last season’s top scorer and player of the year Kyogo Furuhashi continued to be a thorn in Rangers’ side when he volleyed past Jack Butland in first-half injury-time.

Pressure continues to grow on Beale who has now lost four out of six games against Celtic since he was appointed manager last year, recording one win in a game that came after the league was already sewn up in their rival’s favour last season.

Brendan Rodgers however kept up his good record in the fixture with his eighth win in 14 Old Firm games during both spells at the Scottish champions, with only one defeat in that time.

Rangers had the ball in the back of the net after less than a minute gone but Matondo’s strike was ruled out for an offside on Dessers who provided the assist.

Kyogo had a chance to put Celtic in-front 15 minutes later but he mistimed his back heeled effort from a few yards out and James Tavernier done well to keep it away from Maeda at the back post.

The Japan forward, who scored five Old Firm goals last season, had another great chance soon after but this time it was cleared off the line by Goldson and Kyogo will probably feel he should have squared it to Maeda who would have had an open goal.

And just as it looked like Celtic were starting to get a foothold on the game, Rangers had the ball in the net when Dessers took advantage of a mistake by Lagerbielke before playing in Roofe who smashed it past Hart.

But it was chopped off again when the referee was called over to the VAR monitor and decided that Dessers tripped the Swedish defender in the build up.

The visitors dominated the early possession, with Callum McGregor in particular dictating the play, but any time Rangers got forward they seemed to be cutting the makeshift Celtic defence open at ease.

Lagerbielke was sent another warning when a mix-up between him and Hart left Matondo with an open goal to shoot at, but the Welsh winger’s blasted his effort over the bar.

And just like it looked as if they would go into the break goalless, Kyogo struck in first-half injury time with an inch-perfect volley from outside the box that left Butland with no chance to put Celtic 1-0 up.

It was the 28-year-old’s sixth goal in the fixture that he loves making his mark in.

Celtic came close to doubling their lead at the start of the second-half but the finger tips of Butland denied Abada before Maeda was inches away from turning it home as it flew by the post.

Rangers made their first changes of the game on the hour mark when Danilo, Sam Lammers and Yilmaz were brought on for Roofe, Matondo and Sterling.

Celtic matched them with three subs of their own when Yang, Holm and Ralston replaced Abada, Turnbull and Johnston.

Rangers won a corner soon after the changes and a looping Goldson header was just over the bar and landed on the roof of the net.

The Hoops were quick to get up the other end and it opened up for Holm who fired a low shot that was well saved by Butland as the game started to open up at both ends and Danilo fired wide soon after as the home side continued to chase the equaliser.

Beale’s side started to have their best period of the game as it reached the last 20 minutes and won a flurry of corners, one from a speculative Ryan Jack shot.

Lammers then had a gilt-edged chance when he skipped past Hart after a brilliant reverse pass from Raskin but he failed to connect properly after doing the hard part and put it past the post.

Danilo had a couple of chances of quick succession with five minutes left on the clock but Hart managed to keep him out on both occasions.

Cantwell also had an effort saved by Hart in injury-time as the game started to drift away from the home-side.

Despite Rangers having the best of the second-half, it was overall a comfortable victory for the Hoops who will be hoping history repeats itself with the winner of the first derby winning six of the last seven league titles.

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