Any goal in a Glasgow Derby is worth discussing, especially if it ends up being the difference between the two sides.

Saturday’s iteration of one of world football’s greatest rivalries was no different, as Celtic managed to get the better of their oldest rivals 2-1 at home, thanks to two strikes from Paulo Bernardo and Kyogo Furuhashi respectively. The latter proved to be the decisive one, as James Tavernier pulled a goal back towards the end of proceedings on the day, though it was little more than a consolation in truth.

READ MORE: 'I know what I have!' - Rodgers reveals Maik Nawrocki confidence

Alas, the two goals from in and around the same vicinity of the pitch were important in ensuring that Celtic picked up all three points on the day. Using Wyscout, The Celtic Way dissects both goals in their entirety, as Brendan Rodgers’ side ensured victory on the Glasgow Derby battlefield on Saturday afternoon…

Paulo Bernardo goal (24’)

This goal started from the corner of the pitch, as Luis Palma looked to deliver one of his many set-pieces on the day into the box. Highlighted is Rangers attacker Abdallah Sima, who managed to get his head onto the initial cross. Admittedly, the Honduran’s deliveries are hit-and-miss in most games, but this does not deter him from stepping up to the plate and trying again. This time, the ball was delivered into a good area, but the Senegal international matched it well…

However, the good contact that Sima got on the ball was not matched with accuracy, as the attacker played the ball straight into the path of Bernardo, who was situated on the edge of the box at that moment. Alone at this point, the on-loan Benfica midfielder was on his toes for a potential sniff at goal, which thankfully fell his way following Sima’s misguided header.

Rangers’ young winger Ross McCausland had spotted the danger that Bernardo was about to unleash and tried to get close to the unmarked midfielder. It was too late, however, as Bernardo had tracked the flight of the ball perfectly. Allowing it to fall perfectly next to him, Celtic’s number 28 struck the ball with precision, speed and power, taking the Rangers defence by surprise with all three. An unstoppable strike transpired and was sent back to the area that Sima was defending, though neither he nor Jack Butland could do anything about it. Celtic Park erupted, as a new ‘Superstar from Portugal’ was born at that very moment.

As mentioned before in the StatsBomb report that I compiled yesterday, Bernardo’s shot had an original xG of 0.06 – a difficult shot to take on – which rose to a massive 0.80 in PSxG. Quite simply put, this was an undefendable strike from a player who is in a rich vein of goalscoring form at the moment.

Kyogo goal (47’)

Now, to the goal that everyone seems to be talking about. A move that deserves an article dedicated to it in its entirety, this opening deserves all the credit that it has been receiving. The move begins with Daizen Maeda, who had a mixed afternoon for Celtic on Saturday. The Japan winger – not seeing any developments of note – distributed the ball back to his defender Maik Nawrocki, who was competing in his first game since August as a first-half substitute for the injured Stephen Welsh. Rangers striker Cyriel Dessers – a willing runner – had spotted the potential avenue and is running in the direction of the Poland international.

Despite the pressure that Dessers puts on the defender Nawrocki was very strong in keeping a hold of possession here. Holding off the striker, he has a decision to make. Does he try and turn out and switch the play, or does he attempt an audacious line-breaking pass back into the attacking areas? This was his big opportunity to show what he could do on both ends of the pitch, so of course he went for the latter.

The pass is a very good one and finds the feet of Matt O’Riley, who has picked up a great position in Rangers’ half. Not one to be afraid of pressure from his opponents, he retreats to turn into the space that Nawrocki’s distribution bypassed.

A few frames later and O’Riley has turned goal-side. Note the position of Balogun, who is in no man’s land trying to pick up the dynamic Danish international. A constant thorn in the side of Rangers, you would expect Phillippe Clement’s side to be used to O’Riley by now, but that does not seem to be the case whatsoever. Better yet, the midfielder then distributes the ball to a player who has Rangers’ number completely in this fixture…

That man is of course Kyogo, who no doubt strikes fear in those across the city by now. What a position the striker was in, as he had an array of options to choose from, especially due to the positioning of Balogun. The run of Maeda – who started the move – is a tempting one to reward, but this is Kyogo’s fixture, in case you didn’t already know. Out of the frame was Palma, but he – like Maeda – was merely a witness to Kyogo’s latest bit of brilliance that was about to transpire.

Tavernier – noticing Goldson was one-on-one with Kyogo – had pulled over to support his fellow defender, but again, it was too late. Kyogo shimmied in front of Goldson before unleashing a curled shot from outside of the box. Despite Butland getting a decent touch on the strike, his efforts were futile as Celtic’s most reliable source of goals since Henrik Larsson in this fixture struck again, his seventh goal in 2023.

StatsBomb calculated this strike as 0.05 concerning xG, which then rose to 0.28 in PSxG. Perhaps Butland will feel as if he should have done better with this opportunity, but Kyogo deserves the credit for yet another derby goal in 2023, in a fixture affectionately now known as “Kyogo Day” (Ian Crocker’s words, not mine).


Overall, despite Tavernier’s brilliant free kick to reduce Celtic’s advantage by half, it was two moments of brilliance that decided the game for the home side on derby day. With Bernardo’s brilliant half-volley, a star was born on the East End of Glasgow. Who knows, it could be the goal that prompts Celtic’s hierarchy to sign him permanently when his loan expires, all thanks to the option to buy in his current deal.

READ MORE: How Celtic won the Glasgow Derby thanks to three key factors

Meanwhile, Kyogo’s latest conversion against Rangers further propelled him into valid conversations concerning himself and his placing amongst those who came before him up front for the club. In truth, he may already be the rightful heir to Larsson’s throne, thanks to this incredible run of form against Celtic’s greatest rivals.

All in all, it was a successful end to the year for Celtic, their players and their manager. Here’s hoping that this is the perfect launchpad for a similarly successful 2024 in all competitions.