Europa League: Celtic 0-1 Atletico Madrid


Neil Lennon made one change to the side that beat St.Mirren 5-0 at the weekend, with midfielder Ki in place of hat trick hero Gary Hooper who started on the bench. Skipper Scott Brown and Mohamed Bangura took their places on the bench after recovering from injuries.

The opening minutes of the game saw Atletico peg back Celtic, Eduardo Salvio saw his header go inches wide of Fraser Forster’s left hand post, and minutes later knocked the ball out of the Celtic keeper’s hands but couldn’t capitalise and the danger was cleared.

Celtic responded and were awarded a corner which saw Ki swing it in for Anthony Stokes whose shot was saved by Courtois. Celtic were awarded another corner soon after and a Daniel Majstorovic header was flicked on by Georgios Samaras, but again Courtois denied Celtic with a smart save.

The game was end to end at this point, but Celtic’s defence played a pivotal role in Atletico having a number of chances on goal. Salvio was allowed time and space to fire a shot towards goal from the edge of the penalty area, but it was deflected out for a corner.

Atletico didn’t have long to wait though as a poor clearance from Daniel Majstorovic on the half hour mark fell to Turan who fired goal bound. Beram Kayal, skipper on the night, ducked to avoid the ball [despite claims from Neil Lennon who said that he misjudged the flight of the ball] on the six yard line and the ball hit the back of the net with Forster expecting Kayal to block the shot.

Celtic had a great chance to equalise when Adam Matthews fired a ball across the face of goal for Anthony Stokes to latch onto it, but the Atletico defence cleared the danger.

Celtic made their second substitution of the game during half time [the first being Joe Ledley after he injured his ankle being replaced by Charlie Mulgrew]with Gary Hooper coming on for Victor Wanyama who picked up a knock near the end of the half.

In the second half and Atletico were the first to threaten when Gabi fired a long range shot towards goal, but it went just wide of Forster’s goal.

On 55 minutes Atletico had a great chance to double their lead when Salvio fired a low ball across the face of the Celtic goal, but there were no Atletico players to get on the end of it to tap it in.

Celtic pressed forward for an equaliser, Greek striker Georgios Samaras struck an 18 yard shot which took a deflection wide, before Kayal hit a poor shot which went out for a goal kick.

On 67 minutes, Ki blasted a free kick towards goal but Courtois superbly tipped the ball over the bar and moments later, Celtic thought they had equalised when Hooper had the ball in the back of the Atletico net. But the linesman flagged for offside as Stokes was adjudged to have helped the ball on it’s way through to his strike partner.

Celtic keeper Fraser Forster denied Diego with a powerful free kick deflecting it onto the post and denied Atletico again through Salvio from close range. Before Juanfruan was denied by the keeper once again, as he rushed out from his goal to block the chance from the edge of the penalty area.

The win guarantees Atletico’s progression to the latter stages of the competition, while Celtic travel to Italy needing all three points against Udinese to follow Atletico into the knock out stages.

Celtic: Forster; Matthews, Majstorovic, Loovens, Ledley (Mulgrew 38); Kayal, Wanyama (Hooper 45) Forrest, Ki, Samaras; Stokes (Brown 75)
Not Used: Zaluska, Bangura, McCourt,, Twardzik

Atletico Madrid: Courtois; Perea, Godin, Miranda, Filipe; Salvio, Suarez, Gabi (Assuncao 90) Turan (Juanfran 80); Diego; Adrian (Falcao 67)
Not Used: Asenjo, Reyes, Dominguez, Koke,


About Author


Andy Muirhead is the Editor of Scotzine and the Scottish Football fanzine FITBA. He is the Scottish Football columnist for The Morning Star and has written for a number of other publications including ESPN, Huffington Post UK, BT Life's a Pitch and has had his work featured in the Daily Record, The Scotsman and the Daily Mail.

Loading ...