It’s 15 years to the day since Celtic demolished Livingston away from home. The match, on 13 April 2005, saw John Hartson bring an end to a mini-goal drought and served Celtic extremely well in the title race.
Celtic lined up with a very strong XI:
Marshall, Valgaeren, Balde (McGeady 88), Varga, McNamara, Petrov, Sutton (Henchoz 77), Lennon, Thompson, Bellamy, Hartson
The first half was very tight, only Craig Bellamy having any sort of opportunity when his incredible pace took him clear but the keeper stood up to his one on one opportunity. On 43 minutes, McNamara hoisted a ball into the box, which fell to Bellamy, who squared to his compatriot and Hartson crashed it home from close range.
Hartson’s second of the afternoon put the game beyond doubt. The Welshman thundered home a header from a great Alan Thompson cross. Hartson then tucked home an 86th minute penalty to complete his hat-trick and silence the doubters, before Stan Varga complete the rout in injury time.
Full time: Livingston 0-4 Celtic
Speaking to BBC Sport after the match, Martin O’Neill commented on Hartson’s performance. I’m pleased for him because he’s been trying to find the net and the rest of his game was suffering a bit,” the Celtic manager said. “I told him not to be too concerned but he sorted it out. His second goal was magnificent, but getting the first was vital. I thought the second one killed the game off.”
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