Rodgers' Celtic beat Gerrard's Rangers 1-0 in Old Firm derby
Sep. 02, 2018
GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) — Brendan Rodgers handed Steven Gerrard his first defeat as Rangers manager as Olivier Ntcham's strike gave Celtic a hard-fought 1-0 victory in the Scottish Premiership on Sunday.
It was a fierce encounter at Celtic Park as the pair who previously worked together at Liverpool —with Gerrard as captain and Rodgers manager — met as bosses for the first time.
Having taken his first managerial role this summer, Gerrard had gone unbeaten in his first 12 games in charge of Rangers.
Celtic, meanwhile, had experienced a testing start to the season, losing to Hearts in the league and failing to qualify for the Champions League group stage, yet Rodgers's side was able to lift its performance for the Old Firm derby.
Amid the frenzied atmosphere it was a moment of real quality midway through the second half that finally gave Celtic a deserved lead.
Odsonne Edouard released James Forrest who calmly squared for Ntcham to convert from close range in the 62nd minute.
Celtic could count itself unfortunate not to have already been ahead as a spell of extreme pressure before half time saw both Forrest and Mikel Lustig strike the crossbar.
Ntcham himself came close five minutes after the break as he also struck the bar with a long-range strike.
Rangers posed an occasional threat and had the best chance to equalize in the 68th, when Craig Gordon made a fine save from Alfredo Morelos, but a draw would have been an unfair representation of a game the home side dominated.
Celtic moves up to second in the table, three points behind Hearts, which has won all four of its games. Rangers are seventh on five points.