'Worked his socks off': Chris Sutton thinks 24-year-old Celtic 'machine' was superb against Rangers
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'Worked his socks off': Chris Sutton thinks 24-year-old Celtic 'machine' was superb against Rangers

Chris Sutton believes Celtic forward Daizen Maeda played well for the Hoops in Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final loss to Rangers.

Ange Postecoglou’s charges fell to a 2-1 defeat to their Glasgow rivals in extra-time at Hampden.

Celtic took the lead in the 64th minute, Greg Taylor firing beyond Jon McLaughlin with the help of a deflection off Calvin Bassey.

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Cameron Carter-Vickers almost doubled the lead minutes later, but his shot from a corner struck the crossbar.

Rangers equalised in the 78th minute, Scott Arfield sweeping home after being set up by Kemar Roofe.

The game went to extra time and, with penalties looming, Carl Starfelt diverted Fashion Sakala’s ball into his own net.

Celtic’s defeat ended their hopes of a fifth domestic treble in six seasons.

Sutton, writing in the Daily Record, praised a number of Celtic players for their displays against their rivals.

Maeda was one of those, showing plenty of energy and drive both in attack and off the ball.

“Dynamic classic centre forward display,” wrote the Record of the 24-year-old in their Celtic ratings article.

“Ambitious and unorthodox backheel flick fell wide in first half.

“Snapped and harried around the feet of Rangers defence and dropped into a left sided role after the arrival of Kyogo.

“Workhorse tired and made way for Forrest at start of extra-time.”

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Sutton, meanwhile, wrote: “I thought Callum McGregor played well.

“Cameron Carter-Vickers was his usual excellent self in defence although he missed the huge chance to finish Rangers off at 1-0.

“Other than that? Daizen Maeda was a one-man closing down machine again and worked his socks off but the service into him wasn’t great. Joe Hart did okay.”

Celtic are next in action on Sunday when they head to Ross County, before hosting Rangers at Parkhead the following Sunday.

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