Celtic 6 Motherwell 0: Hoops run riot on title day as Steelmen suffer heavy loss ahead of European adventure

Motherwell finished off their 2021/22 Premiership campaign with a disappointing 6-0 loss against champions Celtic.

Kyogo Furuhashi got the scoring underway for the Hoops but their visitors got behind the defensive line a couple of times with Joe Efford’s pace.

The Steelmen could have had a penalty when a cross appeared to come off Tom Rogic’s arm in the box and the Australian was soon up the other end to hit the post on his final Parkhead appearance.

David Turnbull then netted against his former club to take the game away from the Fir Park outfit and Kyogo doubled his tally before half-time.

Jota and Georgios Giakoumakis’s double added to the scoring for Ange Postecoglou’s side who ran out rampant winners in Glasgow.

Graham Alexander’s side finish a successful season in the division’s top five and now look forward to this summer’s Europa Conference League qualifiers. Celtic run out as worthy league winners.

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The away club made two changes from the side that beat Hearts 2-1 on Wednesday. Both switches were at the back with Liam Donnelly and Juhani Ojala dropping out.

In came Bevis Mugabi and Victor Nirennold, who was making his first start since signing in January.

Matt O’Riley, Reo Hatate, Liel Abada, Giakoumakis and James Forrest made way from Celtic’s title-clinching draw at Dundee United and in came Rogic, Jota, Kyogo, Daizen Maeda and ex-Steelman Turnbull.

It was the hosts’ title day and while some narrative focused on Motherwell looking to wreck that, the boss was clear that wasn’t the case.

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He wanted fourth place and that would grant the club extra prize money along with passage to a later round in Europe. But the main job of getting there was already done.

Victory in the two games prior to this against Ross County and Hearts had ‘Well in a jubilant mood and ensured an illness bug couldn’t hamper their Euro ambitions.

A raucous home crowd roared their team onto the park and it took all of five minutes to have Alexander’s entire XI camped out on the edge of their own box.

It was very crowded in and around the penalty box but it was getting kept tight, with goalkeeper Liam Kelly not tested early on by the threatening green and white forward line.

Efford got behind their defense early on but the offside flag was raised on seven minutes to prevent a quick Motherwell opportunity. Greg Taylor tried to get Celtic in behind on 11 minutes but Ricki Lamie did well to head back towards his keeper.

A similar scenario played out on the quarter-hour mark where again, the former Kilmarnock defender was thwarted by Lamie, who could have played his last game for the Lanarkshire side after penning a pre-contract at Dundee.

It remains to be seen whether he stays or not with a clause in his contract to be looked at following the Dark Blues’ relegation to the Championship.

Postecoglou’s side hadn’t created many clear chances but they didn’t need to as they were handed a gift on 20 minutes. A corner wasn’t dealt with by Nirennold and Kyogo finished easily.

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Kyogo Furuhashi celebrates

That was a setback but Efford almost got an instant response on 23 minutes via a dink, but Joe Hart was alive between the sticks to deny him.

Jack tried to double his side’s lead on 28 minutes but it was over the bar. Five minutes later and a penalty claim was waved away, with Rogic appearing to put the ball out for a ‘Well corner via his arm from him.

No sooner than 60 seconds he was up the other end to hit the post off a Jota cross, but it had been a better period for Motherwell who were causing the champions problems.

That push took a hammer blow on 40 minutes when club academy graduate Turnbull twisted and turned before firing low into the bottom corner, putting the hosts into a commanding position.

It was game over three minutes later when a simple ball over the top found Kyogo and he finished easily into the bottom corner.

The second 45 took on an exhibition feel with Motherwell simply looking to bring down the score line, while hoping for a Ross County win against Dundee United to cement fourth.

Jota meanwhile netted Celtic’s next goal with a fine finish on 58 minutes to further stretch their advantage and it should have five three minutes after when Daizen Maeda put a header over the bar.

It hit that figure on 68 minutes when Giakoumakis rose from the bench to send an overhead kick into the top corner, and he added another with the game’s final kick.

This wasn’t the way Motherwell wanted to end the season but there will be bigger games to come for them on the continent this summer after a good term overall.

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Celtic XI: Hart; Ralston, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt, Taylor (Welsh, 63); McGregor (Bitton, 84), Turnbull (Ideguchi, 63), Rogic (McCarthy, 63), Jota, Maeda, Kyogo (Giakoumakis, 63).

Subs: Bain, Abada, O’Riley, Forrest,.

Motherwell XI: Kelly; O’Donnell, Ojala, Mugabi (Tierney, 63), Nirennold (Donnelly, 63), Lamie, Carroll; Goss (Van Veen, 45), Cornelius, Slattery; Shields (O’Hara, 75), Efford.

Subs: Connelly, Woolery, Hopefully, Campbell, Mahon.

Referee: Alan Muir

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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