Celtic equalize in a late game for Rangers to keep their advantage in the Premiership

Kyogo Furuhashi’s dramatic late equalizer saw Celtic draw 2-2 with Rangers at Ibrox and stay strong in the Premiership title race.

Another Japanese striker, Daizen Maeda, opened the scoring for the visitors in the fifth minute, taking advantage of the Gers’ terrible defense.

The Light Blues looked lost going down the tunnel at half-time, but Ryan Kent equalized two minutes after half-time before captain James Tavernier scored from the penalty spot five minutes later.

However, in the 87th minute, Furuhashi struck the net from 12 meters to put Ange Postecoglou’s side nine points ahead of their Glasgow rivals at the top of the table.

After a minute’s silence in tribute to the 1971 Ibrox disaster – which went unnoticed – another crazy and breathtaking Glasgow derby began.

Rangers boss Michael Beale was pleased to see Alfredo Morelos take off a strained hamstring.

However, the Colombian striker was partly responsible for the visitors’ early opening.

His short pass in the penalty area was intercepted by the brilliant Maeda, who fended off Tavernier’s missed attempt and passed Connor Goldson before hitting goalkeeper Allan McGregor from 14 yards out.

Celtic, its players wearing black armbands after the deaths of former striker Frank McGarvey, Pele and Pope Benedict XVI, as well as Canada’s debuting right-back Alistair Johnston, looked in high spirits.

Celtic captain Callum McGregor was hit from outside the box by his namesake goalkeeper, but the corner went to nothing.

Josip Juranovic replaced injured Hoops left-back Greg Taylor in the 21st minute, and five minutes later Celtic almost gave Rangers an equalizer.

Goalkeeper Joe Hart’s clearance was blocked by Morelos, who played the ball to midfielder Glen Kamara, who set Kent up for a ride.

The striker’s shot hit the post of a recovering Hart before Fashion Sakala’s shot was blocked for a corner by Carl Starfelt.

Celtic endured but Rangers benefited from the encouragement and increased share of possession and pressure, although Morelos missed with two headers from corners.

Kent, however, was more accurate shortly after the break when he was set up by Sakala, spinning inside Johnston and curling a 16-yard shot through Hart and into the net.

Rangers fans soon had more reason to rejoice.

When Starfelt picked up Sakala’s leg in the box, referee John Beaton pointed out the spot, and Tavernier made amends for his earlier indiscretion by hitting the ball high past Hart.

The match turned towards the Light Blues and after an hour Postecoglou replaced Forrest and Matt O’Riley with Liel Abad and Aaron Mooy and Celtic responded.

Ibrox held his breath as Beaton looked for a possible handball in the Rangers penalty area after Starfelt’s shot hit Goldson, but play continued on a second possible penalty for Celtic when the ball fell again from Goldson a few minutes later.

The game stretched into increasingly tense final stages.

Rangers countered in the 84th minute but Celtic’s retreating defender Cameron Carter-Vickers blocked Malik Tillman’s shot brilliantly.

But there was more drama and in the 87th minute Celtic scored the equaliser.

Subs Mooy, Jota and Georgios Giakoumakis were involved in an attack in Gers’ penalty area, and when the ball dropped to Furuhashi, the Japanese forward struck high above McGregor to take some of the loot as seven minutes of added time could not secure a winner.

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