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Only one question was to be answered: How many?

WELL Edinburgh, you'll have had your tie.

Champions League football swept in and out of the capital last night and if most of the city would have been unmoved by that, for Celtic the journey to the other end of the M8 delivered the most comfortable of passages into the third qualifying round of the tournament which matters most to them right now.

Celtic Park will put on quite a show tonight but the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony forced its landlord to decant to Murrayfield last night. "Tonight Edinburgh is green-and-white," said the stadium announcer before kick-off. Celtic extended their occupation to KR Reykjavik's net, depositing the ball in it four times.

It was a case of how many for Celtic, in more ways than one. How many fans would follow them to Murrayfield and how many goals would they see? The answer was enough, on both points. More than 30,000 were spread around the stands and the goals came liberally too, three in the first half-hour and another towards the end, delivering a 5-0 aggregate rout.

No new Celtic manager has had a home debut like Ronny Deila's. This "home" was as unfamiliar to everyone else as it was to him. The "dug-outs" looked like a long, uncovered line of school chairs stretched out in the exposed grass between the touchline and the stands. Not that Deila spent too much time in his. He is a tracksuit manager and also one given to standing and walking around his technical area.

He stood there, looking engaged and compelled through most of it, even after any semblance of danger was washed away by one Celtic goal then another and another. KR Reykjavik had contained Celtic in Iceland, not conceding until six minutes from the end, but their own wee park bore no resemblance to the wide open tundra of Murrayfield's surface.

Celtic pulled them around, moved them, stretched them, and played balls behind, over and through them. It exposed KR's lack of quality. When Kris Commons took out their entire back line with one pass after five minutes it was evidence of both his class and KR's poverty. Teemu Pukki ought to have scored from it but was denied by Stefan Magnusson. It was the start of a long night for the goalkeeper.

Virgil van Dijk scored twice in the first 20 minutes. Both were too easy. Commons' corner was nodded back across the goalmouth by Leigh Griffiths and bundled over the line by the big Dutchman. In the first half KR showed little of the organisation which denied Celtic for so long last week. All Mikael Lustig had to do was send a looping header into the six-yard box and Magnusson flapped at it, allowing Van Dijk to score the simplest of headers for 2-0. How many did Celtic want? A Callum McGregor low delivery across goal, a Pukki tap-in and it was 3-0.

Obliterated along with the Icelandic champions was any slight anxiety Celtic may have harboured about having to play Champions League qualifiers, such high-stakes fixtures, at Murrayfield. They will have to return to EH12 in a fortnight for their home leg against St Patrick's Athletic or Legia Warsaw.

Either of those will pose stiffer resistance but Celtic will more than fancy their chances despite the inconvenience of playing at Murrayfield rather than the comforting surroundings of Parkhead. The stands were ominously slow to fill for this one but by kick-off there was a sizeable crowd spread through all four stands. The novelty factor drew about the same number of people as would have been expected had it been at Parkhead.

The Scottish Rugby Union had spent £1.25m on a new hybrid pitch - part grass, part artificial - and it looked immaculate.

A warm evening and the swift removal of even the slightest threat from Reykjavik allowed the short-sleeved fans to savour a relaxed, carefree evening. It was difficult to reconcile such a stroll with the reality that had Celtic somehow lost this tie over two legs they would have been out of European football altogether. There was no chance of that.

St Patrick's and Legia Warsaw contest their own second leg in Dublin tonight. The Irish champions pulled off an impressive and surprising 1-1 draw in the Polish capital last week and will take Celtic to the Aviva Stadium in the event of completing the job tonight.

Legia are considered weak by their usual standards. For now, Celtic are entitled to feel confident that they will negotiate the third qualifying round, too. But if they reach the play-off stage - the last hurdle to clear before the groups - their home leg really would be at home, back at Parkhead.

After the rush of early goals Celtic dominated, easing into a comfortable peppering of Magnusson's goal. Celtic knocked the ball around, and fired over some good crosses, without playing their strikers into really dangerous, close positions often enough. Pukki had his early goal, adding to his four in pre-season games, and finally added Celtic's fourth after an unexpected 44-minute wait. He had squandered a couple of decent openings but was cool, and showed good feet, to dribble past the grounded goalkeeper and ram home a shot from a tight angle.

It all amounted to a far more enjoyable match for Celtic than Scotland and the SRU tend to get at Murrayfield. As for poor KR, their campaign is over. The Icemen goeth.

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