Celtic remain three points clear in the Scottish Premiership with a 100% record after delivering a devastating response to Kilmarnock’s shock opener.

Eamonn Brophy’s deflected strike gave the visitors a first-half lead against the run of play.

But an Odsonne Edouard double either side of half-time turned Celtic’s deficit into a lead and Ryan Christie netted their third before the hour.

Kilmarnock midfielder Alan Power had a late penalty saved by Fraser Forster.

Celtic knew they had no margin for error with Rangers briefly moving joint top with victory at St Johnstone in Sunday’s earlier game. But Neil Lennon’s men were inspired by victory by the terrific James Forrest, who had a hand in two goals as well as hitting the woodwork twice.

The defeat ended Kilmarnock’s four-game unbeaten run and leaves them in seventh place with seven points.

Forrest revels in unfamiliar role

Kilmarnock headed to Glasgow’s East End in good form but Celtic’s Premiership results after European away action this season have been emphatic – winning 7-0 at home to St Johnstone, 5-2 at Motherwell and 2-0 at Rangers.

The Scottish champions could have been leggy after their energy-sapping exertions in Thursday night’s 1-1 draw with Rennes. Instead, they had a spring in their step and Forrest ran the show with a standout performance full of verve.

The right winger revelled in his role on the left flank, constantly cutting inside to leave Killie floundering. Forrest had five shots at goal in the opening 25 minutes – three saved, one rattled off the post and one blocked by Power, leading to forlorn penalty shouts from the hosts.

A goal was inevitable. That it came at the other end was a major surprise.

A lovely pass from Kilmarnock midfielder Mohamed El Markini on the left flank found Brophy on the edge of the box. He had three defenders for company, but got a shot away and it looped over Forster with the aid of a deflection off Kristoffer Ajer.

Celtic stayed calm and sought an instant response. Edouard and Ajer came close but just as Kilmarnock looked to make to it half-time intact, Forrest sliced them open.

The 28-year-old raced down the left flank and delivered a pinpoint cross for the rising Edouard to power a header past Laurent Branescu.

And 15 minutes into the second half Celtic were bounding clear a two-goal advantage. Branescu, who had clawed a curling Olivier Ntcham effort away from his top corner, was powerless to prevent Edouard slipping a low shot in at the near post for his eighth goal of the season after a lovely reverse pass from Moritz Bauer.

Forrest’s efforts deserved a goal. He had to make do with a hand in the third, meeting Boli Bolingoli’s cross with a header that Branescu did little to keep out, before Christie followed up to bundle home the rebound.

And the Scotland winger, back on the right flank in the closing stages, knew it wasn’t his day to get on the scoresheet when a piercing run ended with his drive deflecting on to the bar away to safety.

That would have made the result even more emphatic but there were a couple of second-half scares for the hosts. Forster had to be at his best to tip over a rasping Brophy strike, and the big goalkeeper dived to his right to push away Power’s spot-kick after a rash Scott Brown challenge on Osman Sow.

Edouard’s double proved decisive in the end, although the sight of fellow Frenchman, centre-back Chrisopher Jullien, going with injured, was a late moment of concern for Celtic fans.

Man of the match – James Forrest

It may seem odd not to award the accolade to the two-goal Edouard, who was clinical again, but Forrest was unplayable and will wonder how on earth he has failed to get on the scoresheet.

He hit the post as he peppered Branescu’s goal with shots in the first period, provided the equaliser for Edouard and in the second half was somehow denied by the keeper from six yards before Christie turned in the third. A marvellous performance from the winger.



  • 67Forster
  • 13BauerSubstituted forElhamedat 79′minutes
  • 2JullienSubstituted forRogicat 84′minutes
  • 35Ajer
  • 23Bolingoli-Mbombo
  • 8Brown
  • 42McGregor
  • 49Forrest
  • 21NtchamSubstituted forHayesat 73′minutes
  • 17ChristieBooked at 28mins
  • 22Edouard


  • 1Gordon
  • 3Taylor
  • 10Bayo
  • 15Hayes
  • 18Rogic
  • 27Elyounoussi
  • 33Elhamed


  • 12Branescu
  • 2O’Donnell
  • 26Del Fabro
  • 17Findlay
  • 14Hämäläinen
  • 7McKenzieSubstituted forThomasat 82′minutes
  • 8Dicker
  • 6Power
  • 15El MakriniBooked at 75mins
  • 9BrophySubstituted forSowat 79′minutes
  • 11MillarSubstituted forSt. Clairat 72′minutes


  • 4Bruce
  • 5Johnson
  • 23Thomas
  • 24Koprivec
  • 25St. Clair
  • 28Sow
  • 29Burke
Greg Aitken

Match Stats

Home TeamCelticAway TeamKilmarnock
Shots on Target

Live Text

Match ends, Celtic 3, Kilmarnock 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Celtic 3, Kilmarnock 1.

Foul by Tomas Rogic (Celtic).

Stephen O’Donnell (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Hatem Elhamed (Celtic).

Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock).

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Stuart Findlay.

James Forrest (Celtic) hits the bar with a right footed shot from the right side of the box.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Fraser Forster.

Penalty saved! Alan Power (Kilmarnock) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom left corner.

Penalty conceded by Scott Brown (Celtic) after a foul in the penalty area.

Penalty Kilmarnock. Osman Sow draws a foul in the penalty area.

Foul by Tomas Rogic (Celtic).

Stephen O’Donnell (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.


Substitution, Celtic. Tomas Rogic replaces Christopher Jullien because of an injury.


Substitution, Kilmarnock. Dom Thomas replaces Rory McKenzie.

Jonny Hayes (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stuart Findlay (Kilmarnock).

Attempt blocked. Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Christopher Jullien.

Attempt blocked. Harvey St. Clair (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.


Substitution, Kilmarnock. Osman Sow replaces Eamonn Brophy.


Substitution, Celtic. Hatem Elhamed replaces Moritz Bauer.

Foul by Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo (Celtic).

Gary Dicker (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ryan Christie (Celtic).

Alan Power (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.


Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Moritz Bauer (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Mohamed El Makrini (Kilmarnock).


Substitution, Celtic. Jonny Hayes replaces Olivier Ntcham.


Substitution, Kilmarnock. Harvey St. Clair replaces Liam Millar.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Fraser Forster.

Attempt saved. Eamonn Brophy (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.


Goal! Celtic 3, Kilmarnock 1. Ryan Christie (Celtic) right footed shot from very close range to the bottom right corner.

Attempt saved. James Forrest (Celtic) header from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal.


Goal! Celtic 2, Kilmarnock 1. Odsonne Edouard (Celtic) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Moritz Bauer.

Attempt missed. Callum McGregor (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.