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Celtic thrash Rangers to book Scottish Cup final spot

Brendan Rodgers' Hoops won 4-0 to keep their bid for back-to-back trebles alive.

Callum McGregor celebrates scoring Celtic's second goal against Rangers.
Callum McGregor celebrates scoring Celtic's second goal against Rangers. SNS

Celtic thrashed Rangers 4-0 to book their spot in the Scottish Cup final and keep their bid for back-to-back trebles alive.

Tom Rogic opened the scoring for Brendan Rodgers' Hoops after 22 minutes, with Callum McGregor doubling the advantage before the break.

Ross McCrorie saw red shortly after the restart for Rangers, before Moussa Dembele brushed himself off to chip home the resulting penalty.

Rangers were to concede a second penalty after the break and Olivier Ntcham converted to leave the result well beyond doubt.

Celtic started the contest on the front foot and were denied an early opener when Dembele volleyed towards goal only to his effort rebound of the woodwork on five minutes.

Rangers found respite when play was delayed on 15 minutes for both sets of players to pop a bunch of stray balloons.

Yet upon the restart Celtic continued to probe, with Rodgers' men camped in the opposition's half for long spells.

Dedryck Boyata was next to go close with a near post header from a Callum McGregor corner.

The pressure was mounting and it soon proved too much for the Light Blues rearguard to handle.

Aussie playmaker Rogic received the ball inside the box before twisting and turning past Ross McCrorie and slotting coolly into the bottom corner.

Celtic were emboldened by the goal and doubled their advantage before the break. McGregor pounced on a slack clearance from Russell Martin and drove home the Hoops' second.

Light Blues boss Graeme Murty responded immediately by bringing on Josh Windass for Andy Halliday, who had been the game's surprise inclusion from the start.

Hopes of a Rangers fightback were extinguished within minutes of the second half commencing. 

Dembele and McCrorie vied for a long ball over the top, with the young defender eventually hauling the French forward to the ground on the edge of the penalty box.

McCrorie was sent off by referee Bobby Madden and Dembele stepped up to nonchalantly dink the resulting spot kick down the middle.

Ten-man Rangers made a brief foray forward in the minutes that followed as they sought a way back into the contest.

Alfredo Morelos spurned a golden opportunity to score, missing from close range after the ball had rebounded off the bar.

Celtic restored their authority on proceedings thereafter, and put gloss on the scoreline with a fourth.

Ntcham found the corner with a second Hoops penalty.

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