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We deserved it - Rodgers revels in derby win over Rangers

Odsonne Edouard came off the bench to score the winner as Celtic stunned their Old Firm rivals at Ibrox.

11 Mar 2018, 22:20 IST
Brendan Rodgers_cropped
Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers celebrates at Ibrox

Brendan Rodgers feels Celtic took a "big step" towards retaining the Scottish Premiership title with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Rangers on Sunday.

Odsonne Edouard was the hero for the visitors at Ibrox, the substitute scoring the winner to secure his side a fourth straight league triumph at the home of their Old Firm rivals.

Celtic had twice pegged back Rangers in the opening half but lost Jozo Simunovic soon after the break, the defender shown a straight red card for elbowing Alfredo Morelos.

However, the 10 men still managed to grab the decisive fifth goal of the contest and extend their lead at the top of the table to nine points.

"It was a big step for us to go nine points clear with a game in hand but there's still a lot of work for us to do," Rodgers told reporters.

"There was a lot of talk before the game but the guys kept their humility and came from behind twice to come up with a brilliant win.

"I think when you come to one of your rivals and perform like we did and be up against it with 10 men for 30 minutes, then you're entitled to celebrate. It was a great victory for us and I think we deserved it."

Rodgers singled out Scott Bain for special praise, with the goalkeeper marking his debut with a crucial save from Morelos when the score was still 2-2, though he was fortunate to see a point-blank effort from the same player deflect off the post and into his grasp in the closing stages.

"I’m delighted for Scott Bain," Rodgers, who drafted in the on-loan keeper after Dorus de Vries failed a fitness test, said. 

"When we brought him in he's been absolutely brilliant in training but, of course, for goalkeepers it takes something to happen for them to get an opportunity.

"I thought his performance showed his nerve, his calmness and his agility, particularly when he makes the save and gets up again for the second one when it comes off the post."

Bain was beaten inside three minutes as Josh Windass gave Rangers an early lead, only for Celtic to respond with a curling finish from Tom Rogic.

Daniel Candeias' deflected strike made it 2-1 before Scott Brown's long pass allowed Moussa Dembele to equalise in stoppage time at the end of an eventful first half.

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