Match day live: Rangers v Celtic, Betfred Cup semi-final

Kenny Miller and Tom Rogic battle it out during the Betfred Cup semi-final. Picture: PA
Kenny Miller and Tom Rogic battle it out during the Betfred Cup semi-final. Picture: PA
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Follow the action at Hampden as it happens with our live blog.

94.24: It’s all over! Celtic are through to the Betfred Cup final after deserved beating rivals Rangers. That’s all from us. Make sure to stick around Scotsman.com, though, for post-match reaction as it comes.

90.02: Griffiths breaks the offside trap but tries a lob over Gilks which doesn’t come off. The goalkeeper saves the effort which, as replays showed, was heading wide anyway.

86.56: GOAL! It’s that man again, Moussa Dembele. Griffiths gets in behind Wallace, crosses for Dembele who flicks a superb finish between the legs of Rob Kiernan and, finally, manages to beat Gilks.

85.35: Gilks to the rescue again! Forrest finds Armstrong streaking into the box from deep. The midfielder’s low effort across goal is diverted away by the goalkeeper.

83.50: Dodoo has a shot deflected wide from the edge of the area. From the resulting corner, Tavernier’s cross finds Hill but the defender’s acrobatic effort is easily held by Gordon.

81.50: Brown is booked for a challenge from behind on Halliday. The Celtic captain showing his frustration after a Sinclair penalty appeal is turned down as Wallace just gets to heal to the ball.

79.23: Forrest the latest to go close, cutting in from the right touchline and bending a left-footed effort wide of the far post.

77.19: Joe Dodoo on for McKay. Final Rangers sub comes a minute after Dembele shoots narrowly wide from the edge of the area.

75.23: Chance for Rangers on the counter as McKay finds Wallace on the overlap. The full-back’s cross just evades Garner running in at the back post. Up the other end, Griffiths has a clipped shot held by Gilks.

71.53: Another Celtic chance. Griffiths’ low ball across is deflected by Hill and rolls agonisingly across the face of goal.

69.35: Rangers make a double change with Joe Garner and Martyn Waghorn on for Miller and Windass. Celtic introduce Leigh Griffiths for Rogic.

67.15: Sinclair hits the bar! The attacker curls a terrific free-kick off the crossbar from 25 yards. To illustrate how little luck Celtic have had in front of goal, the ball then comes back off the hand of Gilks, but drops straight down for the keeper to grab, rather than rebounding in the back of the net.

62.20: Celtic sub sees Stuart Armstrong on for Bitton.

60.51: Couple of good chances for Dembele to give Celtic the lead. His first, from an angle, is touched wide by Gilks. He then shoots into the ground, making it easy for the Rangers keeper, after running on to a ball lofted into the penalty area.

57.37: Rangers have their best (or, erm, first) chance of the match. Jason Holt arrives in the penalty area to get on the edge of a low ball, his goal bound shot looks almost certain to hit the back of the net until Simunovic throws himself in front of it. McKay then hits the rebound towards goal but Craig Gordon holds.

56.19: Tom Rogic misses the far post by a matter of centimetres after shooting from 20 yards. A Celtic goal looks almost inevitable at this point.

51.32: Celtic go close again, this time through Sinclair. The attacker executes a give-and-go with Rogic before drawing a save from Hill.

48.48: Goal disallowed. Sviatchenko nods home from a corner, but referee Thomson whistles the defender for an alleged foul on Hill. Looked a little harsh as the players had a hold of each other.

47.19: First opportunities of the second half go to Celtic. James Forrest, drifting inside, has a shot from 20 yards that curls comfortably over the bar. The winger attacks the same space again a minute later and his shot is deflected wide.

45.01: Rangers get the second half underway.

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45.04: Half time. Rangers 0 Celtic 0

41.33: Brown dispossess Halliday in the midfield, leads to a Tierney shot which is deflected into the arms of Gilks. Celtic have began to exert some dominance again.

38.37: Another ropey pass back puts Gilks under pressure, with the goalkeeper unable to stop a corner, but it comes to nothing.

33.45: Fairly scrappy game so far. Rangers are holding their own much better in terms of possession when compared with the 5-1 defeat at Celtic Park, but they haven’t come close to scoring yet. Celtic, meanwhile, have had a number of opportunities.

26.54: Dembele goes down far too easily in the penalty area and Mark Warburton, rightly, asked the question about whether it was a dive. Celtic continue their dominance in terms of chances with Rogic robbing Halliday, driving forward and placing a shot wide of the far post.

25.53: Best spell of the match for Rangers with some good composure in possession, but no chance yet for the team from Ibrox.

21.33: Celtic almost ahead as Gilks gives the ball right to Rogic as the Hoops press right up the park. Midfielder can’t control in time and Gilks scrambles it for a corner. Dembele has a chance from the set-piece, with Gilks making a strong save, but referee blows for a foul.

14.03: Barrie McKay booked for diving inside the area. Rangers thought they had a penalty until Craig Thomson flashed a yellow card in the face of the winger. Very harsh decision. Not a penalty but not a dive either as Jozo Simunovic got the ball before McKay went over his foot. At the other end, Matt Gilks made a vital low stop to deny Scott Sinclair who’d got in behind.

09.44: A Rogic shot from inside the area is deflected and loops just over the crossbar. Chance came about after Sinclair ran at Hodson on the left. Corner easily cleared.

07.20: Rangers have their first meaningful attack but can’t carve open space for a shot at goal. A couple of minutes prior, Kieran Tierney was almost played in behind, but Nir Bitton’s pass was too strong.

02.53: No chances yet, though Celtic have started the stronger, putting Rangers under pressure with their high pressing. Andy Halliday put in a great challenge on Tom Rogic, which means he’s already made a bigger contribution than Joey Barton in the last derby.

0.01: The game is underway.

Rangers team (4-3-3): Gilks; Hodson, Hill, Kiernan, Wallace; Windass, Halliday, Holt; Tavernier, Miller, McKay. Subs: Foderingham, Garner, Dodoo, Crooks, Senderos, O’Halloran, Waghorn.

Unavailable: Niko Kranjcar (injured), Joey Barton (suspended)

Celtic team (4-2-3-1): Gordon; Lustig, Sviatchenko, Simunovic, Tierney; Brown, Bitton; Forrest, Rogic, Sinclair; Dembele. Subs: De Vries, Gamboa, Toure, McGregor, Armstrong, Roberts, Griffiths.

Referee: Craig Thomson

Key Rangers player: Andy Halliday. The boyhood fan was superb in his Old Firm debut as Rangers upset Celtic at Hampden in April of this year. Along with Jason Holt, the lower league side stood up to the Celtic midfield and won the battle. They’d need to put in similarly inspired performances if Rangers are to repeat the feat at the national stadium on Sunday.

Key Celtic player: Scott Sinclair. Rangers will always try to impose their own style on the game, which could mean a high line and, therefore, a lot of space to attack in behind. James Forrest, if he keeps his place on the opposite flank, will also have plenty of opportunities, but as Sinclair has proved he’s the biggest scoring threat from Celtic’s midfield.

Last five meetings: Celtic 5 - 1 Rangers; Rangers 2 - 2 Celtic (Rangers win 5-4 on penalties); Celtic 2 - 0 Rangers; Celtic 3 - 0 Rangers; Rangers 3 - 2 Celtic

Odds: Rangers 19/4, Draw 16/5, Celtic 11/20

What Rangers are saying: “We’ve got some good momentum behind us. The last two results have been two clean sheets and performances have been starting to gather. We learn lessons from every game, no matter if it’s a 5-0 win or we lose in the manner we did last time.” (Lee Wallace)

What Celtic are saying: “They have started to get a few results and get a steady team and that’s better for them. But we’re improving and getting stronger and fitter as well.” (Scott Brown)

READ MORE: Rangers and Wallace envious of Celtic’s Champions League status

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