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Win takes Celtic seven points clear

Patrick Roberts

Patrick Roberts slots home to give Celtic the lead against Ross County, his first league goal of the season

Celtic scored three goals in the final seven minutes as they claimed all three points in the Highlands.

Patrick Roberts put Celtic ahead after only three minutes, but County responded well and almost equalised when Andrew Davies’ header hit the post.

Stuart Armstrong coolly slotted home to double Celtic’s lead on 83 minutes.

Substitutes Scott Sinclair and Moussa Dembele added goals in stoppage time to add some gloss to the scoreline.

The win takes Celtic seven points clear of Aberdeen – who slipped up with defeat at Hamilton on Tuesday – at the top of the Premiership table.

Big changes, same result

Celtic made eight changes to their line-up with manager Brendan Rodgers perhaps looking at their schedule and feeling it was time to rest some players.

They came out of the blocks firing and took the initiative immediately when Armstrong’s desire to press won the ball in a dangerous area.

He released Roberts who danced inside and curled a beautiful effort into the far corner.

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Stuart Armstrong slots home Celtic’s second

County responded quickly though with Liam Boyce, back in the side after injury, pained to see Craig Gordon’s boot deflect his shot wide when clean through on goal.

Armstrong, Leigh Griffiths, Roberts and Ryan Christie all went close to a second. It did not arrive until late on and County will feel very unlucky not to have levelled.

Martin Woods, Davies and Boyce all had good efforts as the home side grew into the game.

County go toe-to-toe with the champions

Celtic appeared to have regained their dominance early in the second half but County continued to battle.

Ryan Dow shot straight at Gordon before Davies towered to power a header towards goal which struck the inside of the post and away.

Celtic’s introduction of Dembele, Sinclair and Bitton reflected County’s increasing influence.

When Gordon came racing out of his box and clattered into Boyce it seemed a red card would emerge.

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Scott Sinclair came off the bench to score Celtic’s third goal

It didn’t, much to the fury of Jim McIntyre who could not believe the goalkeeper had escaped with a yellow.

Dembele should have settled it but Scott Fox brilliantly saved before Roberts fed the impressive Armstrong who calmly fired into the corner.

Sinclair missed a sitter before finally ending the contest in injury time with a great finish before Dembele added insult to injury with a fourth.

It was very harsh on Ross County who put so much in to making the match the spectacle it was.

For Celtic, another win, a significant gap at the top of the Premiership and cries of “Championees” ringing out from the away end in October.

Live Text

Match ends, Ross County 0, Celtic 4.

Second Half ends, Ross County 0, Celtic 4.

Goal! Ross County 0, Celtic 4. Moussa Dembele (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Patrick Roberts.

Attempt blocked. Patrick Roberts (Celtic) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Goal! Ross County 0, Celtic 3. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the top left corner.

Foul by Ryan Dow (Ross County).

Moussa Dembele (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Jay McEveley (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Alex Schalk (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Patrick Roberts (Celtic).

Ian McShane (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Nir Bitton (Celtic).

Goal! Ross County 0, Celtic 2. Stuart Armstrong (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Patrick Roberts.

Substitution, Ross County. Alex Schalk replaces Marcus Fraser.

Foul by Tony Dingwall (Ross County).

Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Attempt saved. Moussa Dembele (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt missed. Patrick Roberts (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high.

Michael Gardyne (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Cristian Gamboa (Celtic).

Attempt missed. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Marcus Fraser.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Erik Sviatchenko.

Craig Gordon (Celtic) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Liam Boyce (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Craig Gordon (Celtic).

Substitution, Ross County. Tony Dingwall replaces Chris Burke.

Substitution, Celtic. Nir Bitton replaces Leigh Griffiths.

Attempt saved. Scott Sinclair (Celtic) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Emilio Izaguirre.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Craig Gordon.

Attempt saved. Chris Burke (Ross County) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Jay McEveley (Ross County) hits the right post with a header from the centre of the box following a corner.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Mikael Lustig.

Ryan Dow (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Ryan Dow (Ross County).

Scott Sinclair (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution, Celtic. Scott Sinclair replaces Liam Henderson.

Substitution, Ross County. Jay McEveley replaces Paul Quinn.