Ange Postecoglou's Celtic defeat Rangers 2-1 and retain League Cup Trophy

Ange Postecoglou League Cup 2023 Celtic FC

Ange Postecoglou led Celtic FC to a 2-1 victory over bitter Glasgow rivals Rangers in Hampden thanks to a double from Japanese striker Kyogo Furuhashi. Rangers scored to narrow Celtic's lead by one goal through Alfredo Morelos, but ultimately Ange ensured his team held out for another trophy.

The Hoops are now in line to secure another treble with their dominance of Scottish football continuing into the Ange Postecoglou era in the east end of Glasgow. Kyogo opened the scoring for Postecoglou’s side at the end of the first half and then he doubled the Parkhead side’s lead on the 56th minutes thanks to great work down the left hand side by Reo Hatate and Aaron Mooy.

Rangers pulled a goal back in the 64th minute when Alfredo Morelos chested down James Tavernier's free-kick and knocked home at the back post. Ryan Kent had earlier hit the post for Rangers with Fashion Sakala missing the rebound.

Michael Beale’s side had the better of the final after pulling one back but they were unable to find the back of the net after Morelos departed and was replaced by Antonio Colak up front.

Celtic should have scored in the dying seconds but a superb save from Allan McGregor denied Matt O'Riley a goal to make it 3-1, while Sead Haksabanovic also had chances. It didn't matter and Celtic were crowned winners for the second season in a row.

Kyogo is Celtic's Hampden goal hero again as Hoops win League Cup final," Celtic FC wrote on their Twitter account.

SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster has congratulated Celtic on winning the League Cup at Hampden.

He said:

"I would like to warmly congratulate the players, management team and directors at Celtic on winning the first ever Viaplay Cup Final. Today’s match proved to be another hugely exciting encounter between the two clubs, and we would like to send our commiserations to everyone connected with Rangers, who helped make it such a compelling advert for our game. Both clubs deserve real credit for how they’ve performed throughout the Viaplay Cup, and we look forward to the competition’s return next season."

Michael Beale has admitted Rangers did not match Celtic's energy during the final today.

He bemoaned how slow his side started in the first half.

Beale told Viaplay:

Not great, it’s never a good feeling. I don’t think we started well and it took us to after half time to get started. We huff and puff but I’ve got no complaints. Days like today realise how big a job you have. We are bitterly disappointed with the result. They will be disappointed. It has got to make us stronger and we have to move forward quickly. These games show you how much you have to do. Celtic were much more energetic than us and that’s where the game was won and lost.

Former Aberdeen captain Willie Miller said the League Cup final at Hampden wasn't the best game.

He told Sportsound:

It wasn’t a classic. We got entertainment in that we thought it was over then Rangers hit back. It goes to show that goals really matter. At 2-0 you felt Celtic were going to run away with it. But then the free kick comes - it’s an Achilles heel for Celtic - the organisation failed them. Then it gets frantic. But Celtic were the better team throughout, yes they were rattled for a bit after the Rangers goal, but they thoroughly deserved it and had a couple of opportunities to really secure victory.

Rangers fans have expressed their anger at new signing Nicolas Raskin not starting the game after doing well when he came on.

The Belgian midfielder picked up the tempo for Michael Beale's side and helped create a number of chances after Morelos pulled one back for the Ibrox side.

One Gers fans said: "Very disappointed that Raskin didn’t start. We gave them way too much room in midfield and surrendered possession very cheaply. Looked much better in the 2nd half but why not make the subs at half time."

Another tweeted: "You can't talk all week that your building the team around Cantwell and Raskin then not start them criminal if you ask me."

A third tweeted: "The positive of today is that if we play Raskin, Cantwell and sign a RW then we win the league next season. Thankfully this is certain to happen as Sakala, Lundstram and Kamara keep tanking their reputations game by game which in turn forces us to build a good team."

READ MORE: Panathinaikos captain Dimitrios Kourbelis wanted by Postecoglou's Celtic and Rangers.