Rangers 0 Celtic 2
It was a Hampden disappointment for the second year in succession for Rangers youths, losing to their greatest rivals in the Scottish Youth Cup Final at the national stadium tonight. The first half was a bit of a non event with both sides employing a five man midfield and lone striker.
Rhys McCabe had an early effort cutting in from the left which keeper Danielle Giordano saved comfortably. At the other end Grant Adam advanced from his box to block Greig Spence as he chased a long ball.
These were really was the nearest to even a half chance in a tepid 45 minutes.
Half-Time:- Rangers 0 Celtic 0
With chances few and far between the first goal was going to be crucial and five minutes into the second half Celtic had a great chance when a Chris Scott slip allowed Spence to race clear in to the Rangers box where he was denied by a fine Adam save. Rangers then created a shooting opportunity when Kyle Hutton and Kal Naismith set up McCabe who’s shot was straight at Giordano.
On 55 minutes Rangers came close to breaking the deadlock, McCabe picked out Hutton breaking in to the box and his hooked ball across goal found Archie Campbell looked certain to score, his strike from close range was powerful but unfortunately straight at Giordano and the ball bounced clear of the keeper.
The turning point in the game came in the space of two minutes just before the hour mark. A slack pass across the Celtic 18 yard box was picked up by Dylan McGeough and his shot left Giordano stranded only to go narrowly wide. A minute later Celtic were in front, substitute Sean Fitzharris who was formerly on Rangers books, picked the ball up wide on the left and cut inside to send a tremendous shot past Adam.
The goal gave the Celtic youngsters a surge in confidence and Rangers were struggling to make an impact to get back in to the game. With just less than 20 minutes on the clock their task became harder still. A free kick wide on the right from James Keatings saw the other substitute Filip Twardzik rise unchallenged to head past Adam.
Five minutes later and only a fine save from Adam prevented Richie Towell from adding a third, played in by Fitzharris he went past two defenders inside the box and looked certain to score before Adam saved. Rangers tried to respond and good individual play by Naismith saw him create space at the edge of the box but his shot went just wide.
Full-Time:- Rangers 0 Celtic 2
Rangers:- Grant Adam; Scott Durie (Kyle McAusland 77mins), Chris Scott, Darren Cole, Gregg Wylde; Rhys McCabe (Kamil Wiktorski 84mins), Kyle Hutton, Kal Naismith, Jamie Ness (Gordon Dick 64mins), Dylan McGeough; Archie Campbell.
Not Used:- Mark Weir, Max Wright
Celtic:- Danielle Giordano; Richie Towell, Matty Hughes; Declan Gallagher; Jordon Lowdon; Callum Bagshaw, Grant Gallagher (Stephen O’Donnell 89mins), Darren McAuley (Sean Fitzharris 57mins), James Keatings, James Forrest; Greig Spence (Filip Twardzik 69mins)
Not Used:- Andy Kennedy, Callum McGregor