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Video Highlights - Celtic 5 - 0 Partick Thistle
Celtic eased past Partick Thistle to win their 29th successive domestic cup tie and set up a Scottish League Cup semi-final with Hibernian.

Celtic eased past Partick Thistle to win their 29th successive domestic cup tie and set up a Scottish League Cup semi-final with Hibernian.

Vakoun Issouf Bayo headed in his first Celtic goal to open the scoring before Tom Rogic finished a flowing move.

Second-tier Thistle, in their first game under new boss Ian McCall, had Tam O'Ware's header ruled out for offside.

And Olivier Ntcham's seven-minute double, then Scott Sinclair's strike, sealed Celtic's last-four berth.Celtic have won the competition three years running as one third of their domestic treble treble.

Thistle, bottom of the second tier, harried Neil Lennon's men will in the first half, but faded after the interval.

If Celtic thought they'd have everything their own way against the team propping up the division below, they had another thing coming, certainly in the first half. Under McCall, returning this week for his second stint as manager, Partick were energised and organised, hard-working and disciplined.

They didn't buckle after Jonny Hayes' cross was perfectly weighted for Bayo to head home. And that speaks volumes about the improvement from Saturday's insipid 3-0 loss to Dunfermline Athletic.

The avalanche of goals from the much-changed champions simply didn't materialise. Some of those given a chance to shine failed to advance their cause for more regular action. Mohamed Elyounoussi and Lewis Morgan struggled to influence the game from out wide and were outshone by full-backs Hayes and Jeremie Frimpong, an impressive debutant.

Bayo came close from another Hayes cross, but it was the burgeoning Thistle who carved out the next big chance. Celtic gave the ball away and only a fine Craig Gordon save denied Shea Gordon as he galloped into the area.

Would Lennon's side heed that warning? The answer came within 40 seconds of the restart. Rogic applied the perfect finish to a fine Celtic move, with the hosts immediately showing the increased urgency their manager had presumably just demanded.

Then came the show-stopper. Ntcham's thunderous blast from at least 30 yards settled any lingering nerves. The Frenchman added a sumptuous second after robbing Raffaele de Vita on the left and curling in off the inside of the far post.

Sinclair applied the cherry to the cake after Thistle meekly surrendered the ball to Bayo, and where Rogic couldn't finish, the substitute could on just his fifth outing of the campaign.

An emphatic victory for a Celtic team showing eight changes from Saturday's win over Kilmarnock.

Ntcham delivered two fine goals, and was the main man in the middle of the park during a rampant second-half display.

All good things came through him, and when you consider the explosive power of his first goal, and the technical quality of his second, almost passed into the side netting, it would be harsh not to give the award to the Frenchman.

Posted by voc1967 on Wednesday 25 September 2019 - 22:14:26 | Comments (0)  |  printer friendly
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