James Forrest netted a hat-trick as Celtic remained on course for a domestic treble by reaching the Scottish Cup quarter-finals with a 3-2 win over Partick Thistle on Saturday.
The Scottish champions paid their respects to former midfielder Liam Miller with a minute’s silence before kick-off for the Irishman, who died on Friday aged just 36 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.
“It is incredibly sad and to get the news last night puts life in football into perspective,” said Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers.
“The thoughts of everybody at Celtic will be with his family. He was a fantastic player.”
The sombre mood at Celtic Park was lifted by a fast start from the hosts when Forrest prodded home the opener after just two minutes.
A brilliant solo run and finish from Forrest doubled his tally and Celtic’s lead just 10 minutes in, but a slack back pass from Jozo Simunovic allowed Kris Doolan to pull a goal back for Partick before half-time.
Forrest showed quick feet to complete his hat-trick nine minutes into the second-half and despite Conor Salmon’s strike six minutes from time, Celtic held on to book their place in the last eight.
Rodgers’s men won the League Cup back in November and enjoy an eight-point lead over Aberdeen at the top of the Scottish Premier League.
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