Celtic earned a place in the last 16 of the Scottish Cup after a 2-1 win over Partick Thistle at Firhill on Saturday evening.
The Hoops took the lead after only 12 minutes, Leigh Griffiths showing that he hasn’t lost any of his attacking instincts with a fine close range finish.
The game was ended as a contest as Callum McGregor’s deflected goal made it 2-0 in the second-half. Perhaps the main talking point involved Jeremie Frimpong and a tale of two penalties.
He wasn’t awarded what looked to be a stonewaller in the first-half, and then conceded a penalty in injury time in what looked to be a poor decision.
Still, the Hoops have come back from the international break with a win.
Here are how the Celtic players who featured against Partick Thistle rated:
Fraser Forster – 6
Had practically nothing to do for the entirety of the game, apart from pick the ball out of the back of the net for Thistle’s late penalty. He will have much busier days as Celtic’s goalkeeper.
Jeremie Frimpong – 6
Spent almost the entire game in attack, as he looked for space to help the Hoops create chances. Was the victim of what looked to a poor refereeing decision when he was pushed in the box and no penalty was awarded. Also conceded a penalty in injury time that was a poor decision. Despite that, he turned in another consistent performance.
Christopher Jullien – 5
Played better than his defensive partner Jozo Simunovic. Adjusted well to the centre-back change, and was solid at the back for Celtic. Will once more be disappointed that he didn’t find the back of the net, a recurring theme in his Celtic displays his mistake led to Thistle’s late penalty that probably shouldn’t have been awarded.
Nir Bitton – N/A
Suffered a hamstring injury in only the seventh minute of the game and was replaced by Jozo Simunovic. A real blow for the player who would have been looking to put pressure on the first-choice pairing of Christopher Jullien and Kristoffer Ajer. Hopefully his injury is not a serious one.
Greg Taylor – 7
Probably his best performance for the Hoops. Constantly attacked and was looking to create chances for the team. He has performed well enough to keep his place in the starting line-up, starting with the Hoops’ trip to Taylor’s old club Kilmarnock on Wednesday.
Scott Brown – 6
Controlled the middle of the park as he usually does. Worked hard, and helped the Hoops break up any attack that Partick Thistle tried to start. Maybe he could have been rested for the game, but as usual he showed what an important player he is.
Olivier Ntcham – 6
Found it difficult to get space in the middle of the park at times. He still managed to have some impact on the game, and had some long-range shots on goal. He has performed better for the Hoops and no doubt will do again before the end of the season.
Callum McGregor – 7
Scored the vital second goal – via the aid of a deflection – that secured the victory for the Hoops. Had a decent game aside from that. Worked well with Greg Taylor on the left-wing, and should gain confidence from what was a good display.
Tom Rogic – 8
An excellent performance in his return to the team. Was full of sublime flicks and touches, and created plenty of space for himself in the middle of the park. Was unfortunate not to find the back of the net on a few occasions. Should keep his place in the side for Wednesday’s trip to Kilmarnock.
Leigh Griffiths – 8
Excellent for the Hoops in his return to the starting line-up. Took his goal very well, and his partnership with Odsonne Edouard look very good at times. Griffiths has certainly given Neil Lennon food for thought when it comes to his strikers.
Odsonne Edouard – 7
Linked up well with Leigh Griffiths as he played in an unfamiliar system of two up-front. That didn’t stop Edouard from having an impact on the game, and he was very close to scoring with a shot that hit the bar. He drifted out of the game at times but Edouard performed well.
Jozo Simunovic – 3
Looked understandably rusty in his first Celtic performance of the season, but that didn’t excuse what at times was a poor display. Both of Partick’s best chances in the game came from Simunovic errors, and he will have to get back into shape quickly if he is to start the Hoops’ next league game.
Patryk Klimala – N/A
Hoops striker made his debut, but didn’t get to make much of his debut.
Daniel Arzani – N/A
Made his first Hoops appearance in over a year, in what could be a big boost for Celtic.