Celtic kept themselves firmly in control of the Scottish Premiership title race as a late Kyogo strike earned them a 2-2 draw at Ibrox, denying Rangers what would have been a pivotal comeback win.
Michael Beale’s side went into the first Old Firm derby of 2023 knowing it was effectively a must-win match if they were to keep themselves within range of their biggest rivals, but made the worst possible start as Daizen Maeda gave Celtic an early lead after pouncing on a terrible pass from Alfredo Morelos.
The second-half was a different story though as Rangers responded, Ryan Kent with a brilliant curling strike and then James Tavernier from the penalty spot netting in quick succession as the hosts turned the match around. However, Kyogo struck with two minutes remaining for the visitors to maintain Celtic’s nine-point cushion at the top of the table.
Rangers vs Celtic latest news
GOAL! Kyogo fires home late equaliser
GOAL! Tavernier dispatches penalty for Rangers
GOAL! Kent with brilliant equaliser after break
GOAL! Maeda gives Celtic early lead
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14:51 , Matt Verri
Celtic kept themselves firmly in control of the Scottish Premiership title race as a late Kyogo strike earned them a 2-2 draw at Ibrox.
Michael Beale’s Rangers side went into the first Old Firm derby of 2023 knowing it was effectively a must-win match if they were to keep themselves within range of their biggest rivals, but made the worst possible start as Daizen Maeda gave Celtic an early lead.
The second-half was a different story though as Rangers responded, Ryan Kent and then James Tavernier netting in quick succession as the hosts turned the match around, but Kyogo struck with two minutes remaining to maintain Celtic’s nine-point cushion at the top of the table.
14:39 , Matt Verri
So that’s 20 matches played by the top two teams in Scotland.
Celtic sit on 55 points, nine clear of Rangers who have a mountain to climb if they’re to deny their rivals a second successive title.
The teams next meet on April 8 at Celtic Park.
Huge moment in the title race
14:32 , Matt Verri
FT: Rangers 2-2 Celtic
14:28 , Matt Verri
It does indeed finish level.
Rangers were poor in the first-half but responded after the break and turned things around through goals from Kent and Tavernier.
But Kyogo has denied them a crucial win, and kept Celtic firmly in charge of the title race.
14:26 , Matt Verri
90+6 mins: Ryan Jacks into the book too, yellow cards starting to flow now.
Hart launches a long ball forward, bounces out of play though. Looks like this will be finish all square.
14:23 , Matt Verri
90+3 mins: Bit scrappy from both teams, to be expected considering the situation.
McGregor caught on the ball and Rangers look to break, until the Celtic captain brings a swift halt to that. First yellow card of the match.
14:20 , Matt Verri
90 mins: Seven minutes added on!
Well then. Plenty of time for either side to find a winner.
GOAL! Rangers 2-2 Celtic | Kyogo 88'
14:18 , Matt Verri
That’s a massive goal for the visitors! Mooy cuts the ball back into the box, bit of a scramble but it falls for Kyogo and he lashes it into the back of the net.
14:17 , Matt Verri
87 mins: It’s Rangers who still look the most likely to score.
This time it’s Kamara in behind after a pass from Kent, he’s closed down by Carter-Vickers though and the chance goes.
14:14 , Matt Verri
84 mins: Sensational block from Carter-Vickers as Rangers looked certain to score.
The hosts fly forward on the counter, Kent slides Tillman in but he’s denied by a brilliant bit of defending.
14:12 , Matt Verri
82 mins: Long ball over the top from McGregor, Jota briefly looks to be in but he can’t take it in his stride.
Has to settle for knocking it out for a throw-in, just wanted to avoid giving McGregor the chance to take an age over a goal-kick.
14:11 , Matt Verri
80 mins: Morelos is done for the afternoon, Wright on to replace him. The Colombian should really have got on the scoresheet before the break, two big chances wasted.
The Rangers ball boys are doing their best for the cause, just knocking the ball away as Celtic try to take a quick throw-in.
14:08 , Matt Verri
78 mins: Jota and Giakoumakis are on for Celtic, with Hatate and Maeda making way. Pretty much 4-2-4 for the visitors now.
Tavernier will be fine to continue after being patched up.
14:06 , Matt Verri
75 mins: Really good from Tavernier to head a cross away at the back post, clashes heads with Maeda in the process.
He’s got a fair bit of blood coming from his nose, so we’ll have a break in play.
14:03 , Matt Verri
73 mins: Tillman slides in on Hatate, that will be an unnecessary free-kick. Miraculously, there still hasn’t been a yellow card in the match.
Mooy sends the free-kick into the box, aimed at Carter-Vickers but he can’t do anything with it.
14:01 , Matt Verri
71 mins: Lundstram holding his ribs, looks in a fair bit of pain. That will be the end of his afternoon, Jack on in his place.
20 minutes to go and this Old Firm clash is still in the balance.
13:59 , Matt Verri
69 mins: Celtic have lost just one of their last 51 league matches, and are on a 12-match winning run. Both of those under threat.
Mooy fires a cross into the box, Hatate has an effort blocked and McGregor then finds a similar wall of blue shirts in his way.
13:56 , Matt Verri
66 mins: VAR having a look at a potential handball from that corner, looks like Celtic might have a case as Goldon raises his arm.
Or not, referee waves play on. He’s not told to go and have a look at it.
Postecoglou said ahead of the match he didn’t want length VAR interventions this afternoon, might change his opinion now.
13:54 , Matt Verri
64 mins: Couple of corners in quick succession whipped in by Mooy.
Second one leads to chaos in the box, ball bouncing around and everyone taking a swing at it. Eventually Rangers hack it away.
13:53 , Matt Verri
63 mins: Sakala causing Celtic real problems since the break. He looks to charge down the right again, Maeda there to cover him this time.
Rangers man then gives Maeda a shove as he looks to take the throw-in. Not the most subtle thing you’ll ever see.
13:51 , Matt Verri
60 mins: Barisic swings a corner in, dangerous delivery to the near post and it’s flicked on but nobody there at the back post.
Two changes for Celtic. O’Riley and Forrest off, Mooy and Abada the two to come on.
13:48 , Matt Verri
58 mins: Celtic starting to wake up.
Wonderful from Hatate to skip away from Tillman, gets to the byline and fires a low cross into the box that somehow evades everyone and runs out of play. He deserved more.
13:46 , Matt Verri
55 mins: Rangers still right on top, Lundstram driving inside and tries his luck from distance. Blocked by Starfelt.
Every challenge being cheered like a goal, this is what Michael Beale wanted from his side from the first whistle.
GOAL! Rangers 2-1 Celtic | James Tavernier 53'
13:43 , Matt Verri
RANGERS TAKE THE LEAD!
Tavernier lifts the penalty into the top corner and Hart gets nowhere near it!
13:42 , Matt Verri
Celtic are falling apart!
Sakala in the box, chops back inside as Starfelt comes flying in... penalty! Referee took his time but eventually points to the spot. Correct decision too.
13:40 , Matt Verri
50 mins: Ibrox bouncing now, they sense this could be the moment for their side to take control of the match.
Celtic struggling to get out since the break. Tavernier plays the pass inside, Sakala free in the box but he lashes a strike well over the bar.
Visitors all over the place at the back.
GOAL! Rangers 1-1 Celtic | Ryan Kent 47'
13:38 , Matt Verri
BRILLIANT FROM KENT!
Long ball forward, Sakala brings it down with Juranovic nowhere to be seen. Worked out to Kent on the left, cuts inside onto his right foot and curls a superb finish into the far corner!
13:35 , Matt Verri
Up and running again at Ibrox.
13:31 , Matt Verri
Celtic with more possession in the first 45 minutes and they’ve looked the better team on the ball, but Rangers have had the best chances.
Eight shots for the hosts, three on target. Celtic’s only effort on target was the goal.
Rangers have got to feel there’s still a way back into this for them.
Bit of good, bit of bad from Hart
13:27 , Matt Verri
Maeda finish the difference so far
13:23 , Matt Verri
HT: Rangers 0-1 Celtic
13:20 , Matt Verri
Morelos should score again, another free header from a corner! This one an even bigger chance but he nods it wide.
And that’s half-time. Rangers have had a couple of dangerous spells, but you’d have to say Celtic have been the better side.
They were ruthless when their chance came too.
13:18 , Matt Verri
45+1 mins: Two minutes added on, as Rangers send a succession of dangerous crosses into the box.
The last of them falls to Tillman on the edge of the box, takes a massive swing at thin air.
13:17 , Matt Verri
44 mins: Carter-Vickers caught on the ball, falls for Morelos 20 yards out. Curling effort is wide of the far post, Hart always fairly confident he wans’t going to be needed there.
Rangers’ most dangerous moments have come when Celtic have been careless in possession.
13:15 , Matt Verri
42 mins: Morelos’ best, well first, moment of the match. Tavernier whips the corner in, free header for Morelos six yards out and he sends it over the bar. Had to score.
Celtic swiftly on the counter, Tillman does well to stop Kyogo getting a shot away. Juranovic tries his luck from distance, miles over.
13:13 , Matt Verri
41 mins: Neither side can keep hold of the ball all of a sudden, so many loose passes. Ibrox faithful less than impressed.
Juranovic with a nice reverse ball this time, Maeda in so much space but he goes for an ambitious first-time effort and it drifts over the bar.
13:10 , Matt Verri
38 mins: Maeda lays it back to Hatate, his shot from the edge of the box is blocked. Came after Kyogo made a complete mess of his effort.
Better couple of minutes for Celtic, they look back in control again now. Morelos is not offering any sort of out-ball for the hosts.
13:07 , Matt Verri
35 mins: Sakala looks to cut inside, wins a corner for Rangers. Pressure building and the hosts need to take advantage.
Barisic over to take it, great delivery right on top of Hart and it’s headed wide by Tillman who got in front of the goalkeeper.
13:05 , Matt Verri
32 mins: Johnston committed himself there, flying in on Barisic but luckily for him got the ball.
Celtic have certainly lost a bit of control, Rangers seeing plenty more of the ball. That doesn’t help them though, Barisic clipping a cross straight out of play.
13:02 , Matt Verri
30 mins: That Hart mistake has got Rangers going, they’re having their best spell all of a sudden. Bit of a shoving match between McGregor and Barisic over absolutely nothing.
Tavernier swings a corner in, headed out to Kent. Back into the box but Starfelt is there to clear.
13:00 , Matt Verri
28 mins: MASSIVE SAVE!
Hart takes an absolute age on the ball, Morelos eventually over to charge down the clearance. Madness from the goalkeeper.
It’s then played to Kent, completely free in the box and Hart does superbly to tip his effort onto the post. We’ll call it quits after that earlier effort.
12:58 , Matt Verri
26 mins: The visitors continue to dominate possession. This time they work it out to the right, but Forrest’s cross is cut out.
Rangers look to break, Kyogo swiftly across to foul Lundstram and halt the counter. Knew exactly what he was doing.
12:55 , Matt Verri
23 mins: Celtic get in again down the left, Rangers have to wake up on that side. Maeda causing them all sorts of problems.
Too good for Tavernier again, cuts it back into the box but O’Riley can’t get the effort on target. Celtic just need to keep getting it to Maeda out wide.
12:53 , Matt Verri
20 mins: Taylor has gone down again off the ball, Morelos is over to him and giving it both barrels for no particularly reason. Not like him to lose his head.
Forward continues to complain to the referee as Taylor trudges off slowly. Juranovic on to replace him at full-back.
12:49 , Matt Verri
17 mins: Morelos wide to Barisic, he has plenty of space to drive into.
Goes for an early cross to the back post, too much on it and Sakala can’t get there at the back post. The Rangers man catches Taylor with an elbow as he jumps, that will be a free-kick.
12:47 , Matt Verri
15 mins: McGregor with the strike from distance, his namesake in goal for Rangers tips it behind for a corner which comes to nothing.
Barisic then gives it away under no pressure, Celtic back in possession. Maeda thinks he’s been fouled by Tavernier as he knocks it past the right-back, whistle doesn’t come though.
12:45 , Matt Verri
13 mins: Kyogo presses Goldson, forces him to go all the way back to McGregor. Maeda then flies forward to close Goldson down, the defender plays it straight out of play. So impressive from Celtic early on.
Rangers fans urging their side to press high up the pitch, it’s not really happening though.
12:42 , Matt Verri
10 mins: O’Riley should play Maeda in again down the left wing, overhits the pass though. Rangers struggling to get anything going.
Forrest now on the opposite flank, finds Johnston who whips it in. Lundstram heads it away to safety.
12:41 , Matt Verri
8 mins: That’s a stunning cross. Maeda skips past his man out on the left, and puts a brilliant ball into the six-yard box.
Defenders leave it, McGregor can’t get there... Forrest isn’t following in at the back post. Home fans starting to get edgy already.
12:39 , Matt Verri
7 mins: Tillman runs at the Celtic defence, goes down on the edge of the box but the referee waves away the appeals.
Celtic look dangerous on the counter, there is plenty of space out there for their forwards.
GOAL! Rangers 0-1 Celtic | Daizen Maeda 5'
12:37 , Matt Verri
A loose pass from Morelos and Maeda is there to pounce. Too strong for Tavernier, skips past Goldson and he then keeps his nerve when clean through. What a start for Celtic!
12:34 , Matt Verri
2 mins: Kent has a shot from distance in the opening seconds, comfortable save for Hart. At the other end O’Riley catches Lundstram late, that didn’t look particularly accidental.
The hosts win another free-kick, this one clipped into the Celtic box. Starfelt heads it away.
12:32 , Matt Verri
We’re up and running and it’s an incredible atmosphere as you’d expect!
12:30 , Matt Verri
Rangers kept Celtic waiting, eventually the teams are out onto the pitch as Tina Turner blasts out. The 700 Celtic fans in the stadium have a fair old job on their hands to be heard.
There will be a minute’s silence held ahead of kick-off in memory of those who died 52 years ago today in the Ibrox Disaster.
Here we go!
12:26 , Matt Verri
Players are in the tunnel, about to be met with a wall of noise.
As ever this match has got the big build-up... time to find out if it lives up to expectations!
McGregor on Postecoglou’s impact
12:21 , Matt Verri
“He doesn’t take any nonsense,” the Celtic captain said.
“He’s very, very clear in terms of what he wants. He’s a little bit different in terms of he keeps himself to himself.
“There’s been a lot of change at the club in the last 18 months. He’s a really strong figure and it could quite easily have went the other way if they didn’t get the appointment right.”
Postecoglou on team selection
12:16 , Matt Verri
Postecoglou, not sounding too great himself, reveals there’s been a bug going through the Celtic camp this week which has had an impact on team selection.
He says debutant Johnston has impressed since he joined the club, while Forrest’s recent displays have earned him a start.
“With James, he’s been playing really well recently,” the Celtic boss tells Sky Sports.
“When players are in form you put them in there, we know what he can do.”
Not long now!
12:10 , Matt Verri
Kick-off coming up in less than 20 minutes!
At the moment it’s a two-horse race for the title - victory for Celtic this afternoon and the race would be pretty much over.
A win for Rangers though and the gap is down to six points. Even that will be tough to make up, but it would certainly give them a chance.
What a day to make your debut...
12:04 , Matt Verri
Huge afternoon for Johnston!
The 24-year-old has signed from CF Montreal, putting pen to paper on a five-year deal, and he makes his debut here in the biggest match of them all.
Johnston impressed at the World Cup, playing in all three of Canada’s matches in Qatar.
Beale: Rangers fear nobody
11:58 , Matt Verri
“At this moment in time, Celtic have had a better rhythm than us but we have to do whatever it takes to get the result.
“I’m hugely confident, it is Rangers at Ibrox. We will meet them at the halfway line and go forward for the three points. We won’t make a step backwards for Celtic or anyone who comes to Ibrox.
“This game means a lot, I feel the responsibility every day. We need the feedback from this game to improve and move forward, as second is not good enough here.
“I have no fear about playing this game, only excitement and wanting to see where my team is right now. I want the talking to stop. I want to play the game.
“In the media everyone is saying Celtic couldn’t be any stronger - then what an opportunity it is for us to see where we are then.”
Last time they met...
11:52 , Matt Verri
Celtic are unbeaten in the last five matches between the two sides.
They last met in September, when the hosts were in a ruthless mood as they blew Rangers away. Any sort of repeat of that this afternoon and the title race is done.
Postecoglou sends VAR warning
11:45 , Matt Verri
Ange Postecoglou wants two things from this afternoon’s match - a win for Celtic and VAR to stay out of the way.
“I am sure the authorities and officials are well aware of the magnitude of the game and the eyes that will be on the game,” the Celtic boss said.
“The last thing we all want is to be standing around and watching an individual with his hand to his ear for too long. That’s not what people around the world want to watch.
“If mistakes are made in terms of decisions, I think we can deal with that, but ultimately what we want to see is a good game of football.”
Wreaths laid at Ibrox
11:39 , Matt Verri
A minute’s silence will be observed ahead of kick-off on the 52nd anniversary of the Ibrox disaster, when 66 fans died in a crush at an Old Firm match.
Celtic have also confirmed they will be wearing black armbands this afternoon.
A statement read: “In a week where a number of important figures have sadly passed away, we will also remember Celtic great, Frank McGarvey, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and footballing legend Pele, as the Celtic first team will wear black armbands as a mark of respect and tribute.
“Further tributes will be paid at our next home match at Celtic Park on January 7.”
Morelos fit for hosts
11:33 , Matt Verri
Morelos leads the line for Rangers, overcoming his slight injury concerns in the build-up to the match.
Kamara comes into midfield to partner Lundstram, with Sakala for Lowry the other change from the side that beat Motherwell last time out.
Postecoglou makes big calls
11:27 , Matt Verri
Interesting team named by Postecoglou. He gives Johnston a Celtic debut at right-back, while Forrest comes into the side in front of him.
It’s an incredibly strong bench for the visitors, with Jota, Abada and Mooy among those waiting in reverse if required. Kobayashi also on the bench, though will likely have to wait for his debut.
Rangers team news
11:22 , Matt Verri
Starting XI: McGregor, Tavernier, Goldson, Davies, Barisic, Lundstram, Kamara, Sakala, Tillman, Kent, Morelos.
Subs: McLaughlin, Jack, Colak, Sands, Wright, Roofe, Arfield, King, Devine
Celtic team news
11:16 , Matt Verri
Starting XI: Hart, Johnston, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt, Taylor, McGregor, Hatate, O’Riley, Forrest, Kyogo, Maeda.
Subs: Bain, Giakoumakis, Abada, Mooy, Jota, Kobayashi, Bernabei, Abildgaard, Juranovic
Beale: It’s the derby of all derbies
11:11 , Matt Verri
It’s Michael Beale’s first Old Firm clash since he took over at Rangers, though he’s had experience of the fixture as Steven Gerrard’s assistant.
The 42-year-old is certainly relishing the opportunity to be involved in the match again.
“I am really looking forward to it,” Beale told Sky Sports.
“It is the derby of all derbies I think. It is watched worldwide. It is a privilege to be involved in it. It is obviously the date I have been looking forward to the most since coming back into the club.”
Word from the captains...
11:04 , Matt Verri
Celtic in flying form
10:57 , Matt Verri
It’s 12 Premiership wins on the bounce for Celtic going into this afternoon’s clash, scoring 36 goals during that run. They have lost just one of their last 51 matches in the league.
They sit nine points clear at the top of the table - victory at Ibrox would surely effectively seal a second successive title.
They’ll be fully focused on getting the win, but a draw would not be a bad result at all for them.
Stage is set!
10:48 , Matt Verri
10:41 , Matt Verri
Rangers have received a vital lift from the familiar Beale’s appointment, reeling off four straight victories including five-goal thrillers against Hibs and Aberdeen.
More recently they have kept back-to-back clean sheets against both Ross County and Motherwell, with confidence suddenly high as they plot a first victory over Celtic since August 2021.
However, how you go about stopping this Celtic team in their current rich vein of form is anyone’s guess. Postecoglou’s team are an absolute juggernaut at present whose only domestic blip so far this season came against St Mirren all the way back in September.
They will relish a feisty Ibrox battle and back themselves to continue that extraordinary winning run.
Celtic to win, 2-1.
Celtic team news
10:33 , Matt Verri
Celtic are likely to have new signings Ally Johnston and Yuki Kobayashi available for debuts against Rangers, though fellow arrival Tomoki Iwata is unlikely to play.
David Turnbull is suspended, while Sead Haksabanovic is out. However, Greg Taylor is fit and Anthony Ralston could also make the matchday squad.
Rangers team news
10:26 , Matt Verri
Fiery striker Alfredo Morelos is expected to be fit for Rangers after being forced off following a starring role in Wednesday’s 3-0 win over Motherwell.
However, Beale will be without vastly experienced midfielder Steven Davis for the rest of the season due to injury, with John Souttar and Filip Helander also sidelined along with the likes of Ianis Hagi, Tom Lawrence and Ridvan Yilmaz.
Antonio Colak is back and Kemar Roofe could feature, though.
How to watch Rangers vs Celtic
10:20 , Matt Verri
TV channel: In the UK, Rangers vs Celtic will be televised live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Football, with coverage beginning at 11:30am.
Live stream: Fans can also catch the game live online via the Sky Go app.
Live blog: You can follow all the action right here with us!
10:13 , Matt Verri
Hello and welcome to Standard Sport’s LIVE coverage of Rangers vs Celtic!
It’s the first Old Firm derby of 2023, and one that Rangers have to win. If Celtic come away from Ibrox with all three points this afternoon, they’ll go 12 points clear of their rivals.
We’ll have all the latest updates, build-up and team news ahead of kick-off, which comes at 12:30pm GMT.