CELTIC are out to make history this season which is why Brendan Rodgers’s team were never going to allow history to repeat itself.

Inverness Caledonian Thistle have proven three times down the years to be a Scottish Cup jinx over the team that have won this competition more than any other. Was there any chance of it happening here? Not a bit of it.

Inverness remain the only club to have taken anything from Celtic this season. The odds on that not changing between now and the Scottish Cup Final grow more slender by the week.

Moussa Dembele scored his second hat-trick in successive games following on from Perth last week. This Celtic team are simply too good for the rest.

"It was straightforward only because the players were brilliant," said Brendan Rodgers. "Their attitude was first class. Defensively, how quickly they got the ball back doesn't give the opponent any time, and in my study of Inverness, they've actually got some good technical players who can move the ball - but we never gave them an opportunity.

“The pressing was excellent and out attacking play was fantastic. We got real penetration at the top of the field, very incisive.

“I thought the two wingers were outstanding Scotty Sinclair will be devastated he hasn't scored!"

Dembele was sensational, as was James Forrest, Scott Brown and Sinclair. The difference between two Premiership sides was frightening.

"Moussa will get goals - I'm pleased for him though because there are other elements of his game we work on in training that I see improving, how he receives it, his touch to move away into space, all getting better," said Rodgers.

“And the captain was brilliant again as well. The goal he scored he was dumped on the floor earlier in the move but still gets up and scores with a great finish.

“It was just a very good performance and I still feel we’ll get better as the season goes on."

That's some thought.

This was never in doubt. The only strange aspect of such a formulaic win was that it took Celtic a whole 20 minutes of possession to open the scoring. When it came it was worth the wait.

Nir Bitton had not enjoyed the best of starts and yet produced a sublime flicked pass with his toe over the Inverness line to Mikael Lustig who killed the ball and, despite having his back slightly to goal placed his shot between the legs of Owain Fon Williams.

Ross Draper could count himself fortunate only to receive a yellow for kicking out at Brown and then a booking was dished out to Iain Vigurs for a bad foul on Sinclair; the Highlanders deciding to put themselves about in an effort to get any sort of foothold.

It may sound ridiculous but it was almost as if Celtic too much possession and didn’t know what to do with it. Inverness sat back, not they had much of a choice, content enough to watch the ball being pinged about in front of them.

However, a second goal came just before half time. More good play saw the ball shifted out to Forrest, his cross found Dembele whose shot should have been kept out by Fon Williams. That it wasn’t left the keeper with a red face and his team with a mountain to climb.

That became Everest six minutes into the second half. Sinclair got the ball on the turn at the edge of the box courtesy of an Inverness player, he was brilliantly tackled by Raven when about to shoot, the ball, of course, fell to Dembele and he made the finish look easy.

His second-half-trick in six days was to follow on just before the hour. Dembele started it with a fine turn and pass to Forrest who got to the byline, waited for the Frenchman to get into position and then picked him out and the Frenchman.

It was so easy, Rodgers could afford to give Nadir Ciftci, yeah, still at Celtic, a run-out for 10 minutes.

The rout wasn’t finished. Kieran Tierney scored with a header from another Forrest cross and while the ball went through several Celtic players, this goal wall about the excellent Brown who won back the ball and began the attack with a mazy dribble.

The captain topped his day with a goal right at the death, a rocket shot which found the top corner.

"We were totally outclassed," admitted Inverness manager Richie Foran. "They looked like scoring every time they broke. Celtic can do that to anyone and they are unstoppable at the moment."

That's for sure. "Celtic have won the Scottish Cup a record 36 times and we want to make it 37," said Rodgers. As Foran said, who is going to stop them?


Celtic: Lustig 20, Dembele 44, 51 59, Tierney 84, Brown 90