Celtic 4 - 0 Ross County (League)Saturday, December 22nd, 2012, 3:00 PM at Celtic Park
Referee: Euan Norris
Scott Brown (46)
Gary Hooper (53,64)
James Forrest (70)
Efetobore Ambrose Emuobo
James Forrest for Beram Kayal (57)
Tony Watt for Lassad Nouioui (74)
John Herron for Georgios Samaras (82)
Mark Corcoran for Alex Cooper (54)
Paul Lawson for Rocco Quinn (77)
Gary Glen for Stuart Kettlewell (88)
Appearances & Goals To Date
|Mark Brown (GK)||7 apps||-|
|Scott Boyd||208 apps||11 goals|
|Grant Munro||62 apps||3 goals|
|Mihael Kovacevic||14 apps||-|
|Marc Fitzpatrick||56 apps||-|
|Rocco Quinn||50 apps||8 goals|
|Stuart Kettlewell||120 apps||8 goals|
|Alex Cooper||10 apps||-|
|Iain Vigurs||144 apps||20 goals|
|Richard Brittain||193 apps||36 goals|
|Colin McMenamin||60 apps||21 goals|
|Mark Corcoran (sub)||71 apps||1 goal|
|Paul Lawson (sub)||171 apps||15 goals|
|Gary Glen (sub)||13 apps||1 goal|
|Youngest Player:||Alex Cooper (21 years 54 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Grant Munro (32 years 106 days)|
|Average Player Age:||27 years 231 days|
|Youngest Player:||Steven Ross (19 years 120 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Ross Tokely (33 years 298 days)|
|Average Player Age:||27 years 73 days|
First Team Debuts
|Rocco Quinn played his 50th major competitive game for the Club.|
Ross County missed two golden opportunities in a goalless first period and were punished ruthlessly after the break.
Mark Brown saved from a Lassad header and a Charlie Mulgrew shot before also reacting quickly to palm away a header from Hooper.
County began to come to terms with Celtic's narrow set-up, the midfield three and front three all playing in largely central areas, and created a couple of openings of their own, the most threatening of which ended with Rocco Quinn sending a fierce drive from outside the box just over Fraser Forster's bar.
Hooper, playing behind Samaras and Lassad, nonetheless looked Celtic's greatest threat and had two goal-bound shots blocked, first by Mihael Kovacevic and then Marc Fitzpatrick. Kayal, playing as industriously as ever, did bring a decent save out of Brown a few minutes before the break, but Celtic could just as easily have found themselves behind at the interval.
Quinn tamely passed the ball into the arms of Forster with the goal at his mercy and then Alex Cooper fired straight at the goalkeeper.
County were made to regret those misses not two minutes into the second half as Hooper slid the ball through for the onrushing Brown, who, from the angle of the six-yard box, fired under his namesake in the visitors' goal. Six minutes later, Hooper had a goal of his own as he glanced a Lassad cross past the keeper from all of six yards.
The third goal came from a Mulgrew corner, which was headed down by Victor Wanyama and nodded into the net by Hooper once more.
That came in 64 minutes and it was soon followed by a fourth - a wonderful run and finish by the substitute, Forrest, making his first appearance since October with his first goal of the season.
Hooper almost had his hat-trick with five minutes remaining, but his close-range lunge forced the ball against the woodwork.
Shortly afterwards, had a back-flick wound up in the net rather than in the arms of Brown, it would have been a fitting end to a splendid Celtic move.