Celtic survived the dismissal of Jeremie Frimpong to claim a 10th consecutive domestic trophy with a 1-0 win over bitter rivals Rangers in the Scottish League Cup final at Hampden Park.
Neil Lennon’s side were second best for long periods but a combination of Christopher Jullien’s 60th-minute goal and a string of fine saves from Fraser Forster ensured Steven Gerrard’s wait for a first piece of silverware in his managerial career goes on.
Celtic looked like they had gift-wrapped Rangers a way back into the game just minutes after Jullien’s strike, Frimpong dismissed for hauling down Alfredo Morelos inside the penalty area.
As had been the case throughout the match, however, Forster was equal to the Colombian’s effort from 12 yards, making sure Celtic maintained their run of dominance in Scottish football.
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) December 8, 2019
Rangers had started with a spring in their step, Connor Goldson heading wide from a corner and Forster superbly pawing away Ryan Jack’s swerving 25-yard drive inside the opening 15 minutes.
The Celtic goalkeeper then stood firm to repel Morelos’ strike after he had raced away from Kristoffer Ajer, then denied Rangers’ leading scorer again after he had been played in behind the Celtic defence.
Rangers continued to look threatening at the start of the second period, Morelos flashing agonisingly across the face of goal after being picked out at the back post.
Those misses came back to haunt Rangers on the hour mark, though, when an unmarked Jullien stole in at the back post to convert Ryan Christie’s free-kick to give his side the lead.
Rangers were handed an immediate chance to restore parity with Frimpong’s foul following some slapstick defending from Celtic, but Morelos’ weak spot-kick was turned away by Forster.
Substitute Michael Johnston inexplicably fired wide after being played clean through, while there was still time for one final Morelos miss – the forward dragging narrowly wide deep into stoppage time, as Celtic held on for yet another win in a major final.
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