Updated: Sep 11
Celtic 4 xG 1.88 (Abada 8 & 40, Jota 32 and Turnbull 78)
Rangers 0 xG 0.79
Celtic had only 604 touches in this game which is the lowest out of all the last nine league games versus Rangers. Touches in the previous eight matches ranged from 615 to 854. This was a very interesting trend to observe especially given that the xG of 1.88 was the highest of any team in those nine games.
This along with Celtic's noted high intensity may suggest a more direct way of playing and this was backed up with the fact that 67% of Celtic's passes were forward passes. It ranged between 63% and 65% in the previous four games against Rangers. Rangers forward passes were only 60% of their total.
However being direct doesn't mean Celtic deserted their passing game as they only had 39 long balls which was a drop from the previous four games against Rangers which ranged from 43 to 55. Not only did Celtic have less long balls the long balls they did have were more accurate at 62% accuracy compared to 28% to 45% previously.
Long balls reduced by 18% and for the centre backs it reduced by 36% so Carter-Vickers and Starfelt contributing a lot to the reduction in long balls versus Rangers. More confidence on the ball? More confidence to pass to Hart? More options on the ball with team-mates in better positions?
Also contributing to the reduction was Callum McGregor as he had an average of 5.25 long balls per game in the previous 4 games versus Rangers but he had 0 long balls in this game.
Juranovic and Taylor had a reduction of only 4% in long balls meaning a bigger % of Celtic long balls were coming from their full backs.
So in summary Celtic had;
More forward passes
Less long balls
Better long ball accuracy
And the best xG in the last 9 Glasgow Derby games
Jota had 34 passes in this game and this was 8% of the team's total and the left wing usually averages only 6% (while the right wing averages only 5%). Getting a key player like Jota highly involved in the game can only be beneficial for Celtic. Jota pass map below.
Joe Hart also had 8% of the team's total and his average is usually only 5%.
Below is the xG match trend line showing Celtic always in front and widening that gap as the match progressed.
For goal contributions it was;
O'Riley on 0.52. 0.15 xG and 0.47 xA with 0 Post Shot xG
Jota on 0.51. 0.49 xG and 0.02 xA with 0.8 Post Shot xG
Turnbull on 0.44. 0.43 xG and 0.01 xA with 0.46 Post Shot xG
Abada on 0.38. 0.34 xG and 0.04 xA with 0.5 Post Shot xG
Giakoumakis on 0.32. 0.31 xG and 0.01 xA with 0 Post Shot xG
Juranovic on 0.14. 0.1 xG and 0.04 xA with 0 Post Shot xG
Hatate on 0.07. 0.04 xG and 0.03 xA with 0 Post Shot xG
Taylor on 0.03 xA
McGregor on 0.02 xA
Maeda on 0.01 xA
Celtic lined up with the same team that played against Dundee Utd the previously week in the league.
Juranovic, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt and Taylor
O'Riley, McGregor and Hatate
Abada, Kyogo and Jota
I was expecting Maeda to come back in but Ange stuck with Abada after his performance at Tannidice.
Giakoumakis, Jenz, Turnbull, Maeda and Moy came on as subs.
There's been 27 games in Glasgow Derby history.
Celtic 13 wins
Rangers 8 wins
7 of Rangers 8 wins have been when Celtic had less than 1,000 fans.
Only once in their history have Rangers beaten Celtic in 90mins when Celtic had more than 1,000 fans.