Nikica Jelavic grabed an extra-time winner as Rangers triumphed ove Old Firm rivals Celtic in the Scottish League Cup final yesterday. In a bad tempered match littered with petty fouls it was Rangers who took the lead through Steven Davis after 24 minute, however the lead was short lived as Joe Ledley headed Celtic level on 31 minutes.
Thereafter both sides had chances, with Rangers just having the better of them but it was no surprise when the game went to extra time. The decisive goal came after 98 minutes when Jelavic fired in off the post and in doing so ended Celtics hopes of the domestic treble.
Celtic were reduced to 10 men late in extra time when Izaguirre earned a straight red for a pointless barge on Weiss, and Diouf managed to maintain his ill disipline by picking up a Yellow card despite only being brought on for the final 3 minutes!
The official attendance was 51,181 and overall there were 45 fouls 5 Yellow Cards and a sending off. So much for the players being on their best behaviour following their unpleasant Scottish Cup meeting.
The 2011 Scottish League Cup Final will be an all Glasgow affair this year as both Celtic & Rangers won their semi final matches. Celtic had a comfortable 4-1 win over Aberdeen who were blown away by Celtic’s first half onslaught which saw them 4-0 up at half time.
Rangers had a somewhat harder time against Motherwell, who pulled the score back to 1-1 in the second half and had plenty of chances but eventually succumbed to a Naismith winner in the 75th minute.
The Final is scheduled for Sunday 20th March 2011.
The semi Finals of the Scottish League cup are scheduled for this weekend and if the games go according to form it could be a Celtic Rangers Final, which would give Scottish Football a bit of a boost at a time when it is looking a little grim.
On Saturday Celtic take on Aberdeen and then its Rangers V Motherwell on the Sunday. The two have met twice in the final recently with Rangers winning in 2003 and Celtic getting revenge in 2009.
The prospects of an all Glasgow Scottish League Cup Final took a step closer when Celtic and Rangers avoided each other in the semi final draw. With both being in good form its hard to see them not making the final.
The matches are:
Aberdeen v Celtic
Rangers v Motherwell
Both games are scheduled for Saturday 29th January 2011
Both Celtic & Rangers have made it to the Scottish League Cup Semi Finals following away wins over St Johnstone and Kilmarnock respectively. Rangers didn’t look particularly impressive in beating Killie, who had the lions share of the shots and edged the possession. However Rangers showed more composure in front of goal and a goal in each half was enough to see them through.
Celtic looked to be cruising when going 3-0 up inside 13 minutes however St Johnstone did stage a bit of a fight back pulling the score back to 3-2. However Celtic looked largely in control and probably could have scored again had they applied themselves. The crowd of 5,151 was a tad disapointing and could be the first worrying sign of the age of austerity dawning. With Scottish football already starved of funds dwindling crowds is the last thing it needs. Still an “old firm” Cup Final might just revive things a bit.
Aberdeen & Motherwell are the other two teams in the last 4 as we await the draw.
Celtic & Rangers let the scoring as the Scottish Premier League clubs dominated the Scottish League Cup 3rd round and only Falkirk will represent the Scottish Leagues in the last 8.
Rangers hammered League one leaders Dunfermline 7-2 thanks in no small part to a Kyle Lafferty hat trick. The score was only 3-2 early in the second half, however Rangers class eventually told as the gap between the top of the SPL and the lower divisions was emphasised.
Celtic had an even easier win over fellow SPL side Inverness Caledonian Thistle with Greek International Georgios Samaras hitting a hat trick in their 6-0 win.
The other Premier League winners didn’t find it quite as easy and Dundee United needed extra time to beat Ross county 2-1 in a repeat of last seasons Scottish Cup Final.
The only non premier league winner Falkirk won the rounds most thrilling game in which they led 2-0 at half time only to find themselves 3-2 behind with 10 minutes to play. However an 80th minute Ryan Flynn goal gave them a lifeline and then just as the game looked set for extra time Mark Stewart popped up with his second goal 4 minutes into injury time to snatch the win. Sadly only 4,216 fans turned up to watch what turned out to be a classic match.
The Final Eight are:
Not content with last seasons heroics in the Scottish Cup where they reached the Final, Ross County now have their sights set on a Scottish League Cup run after beating SPL St Mirren 4-3 on penalties.
In a hard fought game the lead changed hands three times and finished 3-3 after extra time. However in the ensuing Penalty shoot out Ross County added another SPL scalp to their collection and will now be hoping for another home draw in the next round.
The nights other ties were much more clear cut with Kilmarnock winning 6-2 against Airdrie United, Inverness seeing off Peterhead 3-0 in what would have been a Highland League Fixture not that many years ago, and Queen of the South taking care of Scottish league 2 side Forfar 4-1.
The Third round draw will include the Scottish Teams who are currently involved in Europe so one of the smaller clubs remaining could get a big payday if they get either Celtic or Rangers.
After two 4-0 defeats in their opening SPL games Hamilton would have been hoping for a bit of a morale boost in the CIS Sponsored Scottish League Cup. However it was not to be as they crashed out at 1st Division Raith Rovers. In a far from thrilling game Hamilton failed to get a shot on target and despite not being much better Raith managed to grab the winner in the second half.
The other SPL clubs playing all advances with varying degrees of ease, with current league leaders Aberdeen coasting past Alloa who will be consoled by the 1,649 crowd, given their average home attendance in the league is likely to be around half this.
The nights biggest winners were Hearts who won 4-0 over Elgin who were totally outclassed and only managed one attempt at goal in the match. Still given the gulf in resources between the two sides holding Hearts to 4-0 was a good performance.