27.11.2016 18:12 h

Rogic fires Celtic to 100th trophy in League Cup

Celtic claimed the 100th trophy of their 128-year history as they cruised to a 3-0 win over Aberdeen in the Scottish League Cup final at Hampden on Sunday.

Australia international Tom Rogic opened the scoring with a sensational 16th-minute strike and James Forrest fired in a superb second eight minutes before the break.

Aberdeen briefly rallied, but Anthony O'Connor's foul on Forrest allowed in-form striker Moussa Dembele to slot home a 64th-minute penalty as Brendan Rodgers claimed his first trophy as Celtic manager.

"I was very pleased to play with such calmness and composure and in the main we controlled the game very well," Rodgers said.

"I'm absolutely delighted for the players, supporters and staff. It's something tangible to show for the quality of their work."

It is the 16th time the Hoops, who are unbeaten domestically this season and top the Scottish Premiership by eight points, have lifted the trophy.

They remain on course for a first domestic treble since 2000-01.

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes admitted his side had been beaten by the better team.

"I don't think there is any disgrace to lose to this Celtic team, but there is still disappointment as I know we are better than we showed," he said.

"We can use today's sobering performance and experience to help us in another cup final."

Rodgers made two changes to the side that had lost to Barcelona in the Champions League in mid-week, with Patrick Roberts and Forrest handed places in the starting XI.

The pair combined early on as Roberts played a precision pass into the path of Forrest, who went down under the challenge of Shay Logan in the box, but referee John Beaton waved away their pleas for a penalty.

Celtic looked more at home on the Hampden pitch and the first chance fell to them in the 10th minute.

Stuart Armstrong played in Emilio Izaguirre down the left and his fine cross was met by Dembele, whose powerful angled header was palmed away by Joe Lewis before the Dons defence cleared the danger.

Aberdeen could not keep Celtic at bay for long, though, as Socceroo star Rogic netted against them for the third game running this season, ably assisted by the determination of Jozo Simunovic.

The Croatian defender strode out of defence and although his first pass was blocked, he beat Andrew Conisidine to the loose ball and fed Rogic.

The Australian dipped his shoulder before curling a sensational left-foot strike beyond Lewis from the edge of the box.

Barely two minutes later Aberdeen had a chance to equalise. James Maddison swung a free-kick deep into the Celtic box that was attacked by Considine, but his header was pushed away by Craig Gordon.

They were made to rue that missed opportunity when Forrest increased Celtic's advantage.

The winger picked up the ball just inside the Aberdeen half and ran at the retreating Dons rearguard before unleashing an unstoppable strike into the bottom-left corner.

Aberdeen stepped up their challenge after the interval as they won a series of corners, but they were unable to capitalise and create any clear-cut chances from their set-pieces.

A moment of madness from O'Connor allowed Celtic to kill off the contest.

The Dons defender felled Forrest in the box as the winger chased a pass from fellow goal-scorer Rogic, with referee Beaton immediately pointing to the spot.

French striker Dembele took the resulting penalty and sent Lewis the wrong way to score his 17th goal of the season and seal a historic victory.