Celtic standout pinpoints what went wrong in Rangers draw

Celtic’s Stephen Welsh lamented Celtic inability to convert chances against Rangers but believes the nature of the display demonstrates a record fifth straight Scottish Cup can be theirs.

Celtic's Stephen Welsh (centre) has a headed chance during the 1-1 derby draw. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)
Celtic's Stephen Welsh (centre) has a headed chance during the 1-1 derby draw. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)

The defender produced a rock solid showing in the 1-1 draw that Celtic will agonise over for letting an early lead slip through the loss of another set-piece goal – a corner at which Welsh was not at fault – and coming up short when consistently engineering one-on-ones with Allan McGregor.

“I thought we were first class in the first half and showed our quality. We should have come away with three or four goals at half time,” said the 22-year-old. “They came in to it a bit more in the second but we still had enough chances to win. It’s key moments that haven’t gone our way. Overall we were the better team and the performance is something to build on.

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“I think we showed what we are about in that first half. We should have taken a few of those chances. But we showed we can keep the ball and be physical. It gives us something to build on for the rest of the season and next year. We need to go for the Scottish Cup. This club is built on winning trophies. We need to take it a game at a time but that’s how we’ve won four Scottish Cups in a row. We want to finish this campaign with a trophy.

“We defended well from open play but it was disappointing to concede from another goal from a set piece. We’ve done a lot of work on them but we need to go away and do more. We’ve conceded a lot from set pieces. The concentration levels need to be there 100 percent of the time. There’s been too many goals from corners.

“It was a massive occasion. It’s an emotional game but you need to take that out and be professional. I think I have come a long way since [my first game against Rangers in October]. I’m more mature, better on the ball and defensively. I’m probably more physical as well. I definitely felt a lot better out there this time compared to my debut.”

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