Rangers Storm Back, Claim 396th Old Firm Derby With Celtic


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Celtic’s English striker GARY HOOPER (88), who led The Bhoys last season with 20 goals in the Scottish Premier League following a 2.4 million pound transfer from English League Championship (second division) side Scunthorpe United, attempts to hold off United States World Cup midfielder MAURICE EDU of Rangers during the goal-filled 396th OLD FIRM DERBY at Ibrox Stadium on the south bank of the River Clyde in Glasgow.
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Defending Scotting Premier League champions RANGERS FC went to the break behind courtesy a very soft goal conceded to intra-city, arch-rival CELTIC FC but stormed back in the second half with three unanswered strikes to claim a 4-2 victory in the 396th OLD FIRM DERBY at Ibrox on Sunday.

Scotland international wideman SCOTT NAISMITH of Rangers and English striker GARY HOOPER of Celtic had traded first half goals before abysmal goalkeeping from Scottish international ALLAN MACGREGOR between the sticks for Rangers allowed Celtic’s Morocco international defender BADR EL KADDOURI, an Old Firm rookie on loan from Ukrainian side Dynamo Kiev, to find the back of the net in the 41st minute with the most routine of shots from long range.

But new trainer ALLY MCCOIST’s men leveled the match with a header from Croatia international striker NIKICA JELAVIC ten minutes in the second stanza. And Northern Ireland international striker KYLE LAFFERTY lifted Rangers to the lead with a second-chance strike in the 72nd minute. After Celtic had former Scotland U-21 international CHARLES MULGREW dismissed for a second yellow card with fifteen minutes remaining, Naismith tacked on his second goal to delight the home side faithful in injury time.

A symbolic result considering Rangers went unbeaten with nine wins in their last ten matches to overtake Celtic by a solitary point and snatch the S.P.L. title last term. With the 4-2 win at Ibrox, Rangers also stretched their record in the magnificent Old Firm Derby to 158 wins, 143 losses and 95 draws. This Old Firm encounter marked the 301st meeting in the Scottish top flight and saw the Rangers win their 118th match while Celtic were denied their 100th career win against their eternal enemy for a second consecutive time.

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Israel international midfielder BIRAM KAYAL (33) of Celtic, who made 21 appearances and scored two goals his first season in Scottish Premier League after signing from FC Maccabi Haifa for a transfer fee of 1.8 million English pounds in July of 2010, lands on top of Scotland international winger STEVEN NAISMITH, the Rangers’ two-goal scorer on the day, during the 396th Old Firm Derby at Ibrox Stadium on the south bank of the River Clyde in Glasgow.
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396th Old Firm Derby
September 18, 2011
Ibrox Stadium, Glasgow

RANGERS : MacGregor – Whittaker, Goian, Bocanegra, Papac – Naismith, Davis, Edu, Wylde – Lafferty (McCulloch 80′), Jelavic (Healy 90′)

CELTIC : Forster – M. Wilson, Loovens, K. Wilson, El Kaddouri (Stokes 63′) – Brown (Forrest 74′), Kayal, Ki, Mulgrew – Samaras (Bangura 83′), Hooper

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Scotland international winger STEVE NAISMITH of Rangers (left) celebrates his first career Old Firm strike by signaling to Celtic supporters after scoring the opening goal of the match while a pair of The Bhoys, South Korea World Cup midfielder SUNG-YUENG KI and Morocco international defender BADR EL KADDOURI (4), discuss what went wrong.
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English striker GARY HOOPER of Celtic adroitly curls the ball around Rangers’ Scotland international goalkeeper ALLAN MACGREGOR (1) and inside the far post to score his fourth goal in the S.P.L. this season.
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Hands on the head for one man as well as the astonished looks on the faces of the younger fans in the stands behind the net say it all as Rangers goalkeeper ALLAN MACGREGOR has a complete nightmare and gifts the not-pictured Morocco international defender BADR EL KADDOURI of Celtic an easy goal.
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Croatia international striker NIKICA JELAVIC (9), who scored 16 goals in 23 Scottish Premier League games for Rangers last term after transferring from Austrian club SK Rapid Vienna in a deal worth 4.0 million English pounds, rises above the Celtic defense to head the ball down and score his third goal of this S.P.L. season with a bounce.
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Northern Ireland international striker KYLE LAFFERTY (11), who scored 15 goals in all competitions for Rangers last season, takes advantage of a second bite at the apple and left-foots the record Scottish champion to the lead against Glasgow intra-city rival Celtic in the 396th Old Firm Derby.
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Scotland international winger STEVEN NAISMITH (14) of Rangers wheels away after scoring his second goal of the game and sixth of the season in the Scottish Premier League as the Celtic pair of English goalkeeper FRASER FORSTER and Ireland international striker ANTHONY STOKES (10) can only look at the ball in the back of the net at Ibrox.

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