Celtic 5 - 0 Inverness CT

League Match
Saturday, March 1st, 2014, 3:00 PM at Celtic Park, Glasgow
Attendance: 46,552
Referee: Brian Colvin
Celtic Inverness CT

Leigh Griffiths (12)
Charlie Mulgrew (22)
Leigh Griffiths (57)
Kris Commons (78)
Leigh Griffiths (85)

Team Managers
Neil Lennon John Hughes

Starting Eleven
Fraser Forster
Adam Matthews
Efe Ambrose
Virgil van Dijk
Emilio Izaguirre
Scott Brown
Nir Biton
Charlie Mulgrew
James Forrest
Anthony Stokes
Leigh Griffiths
Dean Brill
Josh Meekings
Gary Warren
David Raven
Nick Ross
Graeme Shinnie
Greg Tansey
Ross Draper
James Vincent
Richie Foran
Billy Mckay

Lukasz Zaluska
Georgios Samaras
Derk Boerrigter
Kris Commons
Stefan Johansen
Beram Kayal
Darnell Fisher
Ryan Esson
Daniel Devine
Carl Tremarco
Liam Polworth
Conor Pepper
Ryan Christie
Marley Watkins

Kris Commons -> Anthony Stokes (65)
Darnell Fisher -> Adam Matthews (79)
Stefan Johansen -> Scott Brown (85)
Daniel Devine for Gary Warren (67)
Marley Watkins for Ross Draper (67)
Ryan Christie for Billy Mckay (80)

None. None.

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Dean Brill (GK) 32 apps -
Josh Meekings 94 apps -
Gary Warren 68 apps9 goals
David Raven 64 apps1 goal
Nick Ross 135 apps11 goals
Graeme Shinnie 132 apps4 goals
Ross Draper 70 apps6 goals
Greg Tansey 47 apps6 goals
James Vincent 17 apps1 goal
Richie Foran 192 apps44 goals
Billy Mckay 101 apps50 goals
Daniel Devine (sub) 19 apps -
Ryan Christie (sub) 3 apps -
Marley Watkins (sub) 21 apps1 goal

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:James Vincent (24 years 161 days)
Oldest Player:Josh Meekings (2015 years 215 days)
Average Player Age:27 years 1 days
Domestic Players:6 (54.55 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Ryan Christie (19 years 9 days)
Oldest Player:Conor Pepper (2015 years 215 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 234 days
Domestic Players:11 (61.11 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts


Inverness Roasted:

John Hughes was forced to leave Aaron Doran out with a thigh problem and he chose Nick Ross ahead of Marley Watkins to start against champions elect Celtic.

Hughes was looking for his side to make an impact at Parkhead and it looked as though his team heeded the pep talk as they broke forward in the first couple of minutes, but it only took Celtic around ten minutes to put us back in our box as Leigh Griffiths scored the opener from close range to dent our aspirations.

Celtic then started to dominate and a further ten minutes elapsed before Griffiths turned provider with a corner to the near post which was flicked home by Charlie Mulgrew as the Inverness defence froze.

A good break down the left saw the ball centred and Foran slid onto it on the edge of the box, but he could only direct the ball just over the bar, Inverness' best chance of the game so far.

The play had levelled out now but Inverness started the game too late and at 2-0 down were chasing the game.

Just over the half hour and Celtic looked to kill the game as Stokes, Griffiths and Mulgrew all had shots blocked, however at this stage it looked as though Celtic would go on to record a comfortable victory.

Izaguirre earned a free kick just before half time but the hard pressed visitors defence managed to get the ball clear.

Nick Ross made his way to the home bye line but was crowded out before getting his cross away and the first half drew to a close with Celtic deservedly 2-0 ahead, the score probably flattering Inverness on this occasion, our defence cut open all too often.

Half Time 2-0

Second half started the way the first had finished and Griffiths flashed a shot into the side net. This stirred Inverness and a good move was ended with Foran lying flat of his face in the Celtic box, but nothing doing with the referee in prime position to judge.

Number three should have come from Griffiths' boot but he chipped a shot just wide from the centre of the box as the Inverness defence was peeled open once more.

Inverness were struggling to get a foothold in this game, not helped by poor balls into the area, most balls floundering on the first defender. However, Billy McKay did get a shot away but it never troubled Fraser Forster.

A period of possession for Inverness followed, but once more the final ball was poor, Meekings floating a long ball well beyond everybody.

Stokes was next along for shooting practice and he fired a low shot just wide, a corner given.

Another good spell of retention saw Ross Draper curl a 25 yard effort just wide but it was game over a minute later when Griffiths latched onto a ball on the left side and thrashed a twenty yard shot behind a startled Dean Brill. Tremendous goal for Griffiths who is on fire.

The visitors plugged away though and McKay slipped at the vital moment right in front of goal, chance gone. Foran had the next great opportunity moments later, but Forster blocked Forans attempt from close range as Richie delayed his parting shot, should really have scored.

Free kick for a foul on Draper twenty five yards out came to nothing, and Celtic broke forward. It would have been four, but Stokes tried to tee up Griffiths, three times in the same move, but it ended without a hat-trick as Griffiths fired high over; Stokes substituted for Commons just after this.

Daniel Devine came on for Warren, obviously with one eye on the League Cup Final, and Watkins replaced Draper for the final twenty two minutes.

Forrest hit the woodwork, his cross bouncing off the top of the bar as Celtic searched for a fourth goal. Brill kept the fourth goal out saving well as Forrest burst onto a ball into the box and Griffiths nearly got his third, lashing a shot behind.

It wasn't all one way traffic, but Celtic were far more incisive in the final quarter and threatened a cricket score at times.

Brill finally cracked as Commons turned and hit a speculative shot from two kilometres range, the ball trickling through him and over the line.

He made up for that seconds later by preventing a fifth with a fantastic double save to deny a rampant Celtic.

The end can not come soon enough for Inverness now and Hughes gives Ryan Christie the last fifteen minutes on the park, replacing Billy McKay.

Commons lifted a chance over the bar as the game continued in one direction now but Griffiths notched his hat-trick soon after tucking the ball into the corner, Inverness looking rather bedraggled by now.

Tansey fired over from the edge of the box but it didn't matter, and Devine put a free header well over. Nothing was going right for Inverness after their midweek exertions.

Full Time 5-0

Least said about this the better. Inverness were trounced. On another day we might have scored two or three, but if you don't take your chances against quality teams then you can expect to be punished, and punished we certainly were.

tm4tj MotM: Leigh Griffiths tore the Inverness back line a new one today and he could have score six, such was Celtic's overall dominance. We have bigger fish to fry, this was just a wee rehearsal for the League Cup Final in two weeks.

Match report written by tm4tj

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Celtic 28 24 3 1 68 14 54 75
2. Aberdeen 28 17 3 8 40 26 14 54
3. Motherwell 27 16 2 9 43 40 3 50
4. Dundee Utd 27 12 8 7 49 32 17 44
5. Inverness CT 26 13 5 8 33 26 7 44
6. St. Johnstone 27 10 5 12 34 31 3 35
7. Hibernian 27 8 8 11 25 32 -7 32
8. Kilmarnock 28 7 6 15 33 47 -14 27
9. St. Mirren 28 7 6 15 27 44 -17 27
10. Partick Thistle 28 5 11 12 29 45 -16 26
11. Ross County 28 7 5 16 33 50 -17 26
12. Hearts 28 5 6 17 23 50 -27 21