Nervy Celtic grind out 3 points, after great start *Goals*

Well done that man
Well done that man, it all started well

Goals:

With Inverness losing to Aberdeen Celtic moved level on points in what has been a decent week for the club. Last week a good win away at Hearts, a heartbreaking 2-0 defeat but brilliant display against AC Milan in midweek, all eyes were on how Celtic would react to this “Euro Hangover” we suffered from last season and today we looked like we would win this with room to spare

We took the lead on 10 minutes when Pukki scored his 2nd in 2 games and on his home debut today. He collected the ball in the box and smashed a shot under Alan Mannus to really show us all he could be a decent signing, 2 goals in your first 2 games with only spending 7 days with the players including a flight to Italy and back is good form, I think once this lad settles and gets going he could be something good for us

Delight for Pukki with an early goal and on his home debut
Delight for Pukki with an early goal and on his home debut

What other former Striker celebrated with his arms like this? 😀

At this stage is was complete control from Celtic, we stroked the ball about and looked as comfortable as we have done in recent weeks, no signs to be alarmed, on the 17th minute Mathews met a cross with the chest, let it drop then smashed a shot at Mannus who couldn’t hold it, sadly Boerrigter couldn’t get the rebound on target, Celtic were rampant and could and looking back should have been 4 or 5 up early on

Pukki nearly got his 2nd of the game on 21 minutes when a cracking counter attack and cross by Matthews was just out of reach from Pukki. But 5 minutes later a Stokes pass was not cleared by Wotherspoon and there was Mulgrew to hammer a cracking low show into the bottom right of goal, great finish, 2-0 and the cigars were out and we were all relaxed, easy street we were on

Mulgrew doubles Celtic's lead with a fantastic strike
Mulgrew doubles Celtic’s lead with a fantastic strike

We could have added to the score on 33 minutes when a cracking curled shot by Mulgrew went just wide, 3 minutes later Stokes threw a brilliant cross into the box but Boerrigter couldn’t connect his header, the third goal at this stage, well it seemed just a matter of time. Celtic had a couple of more chances before half time when Commons and then Stokes had chances to get this 3rd goal. But 2-0 at half time and we all enjoyed a half time snack knowing we were on easy street

The 2nd half started with the introduction of new midfielder Nir Biton for Adam Matthews, Mulgrew went back to centre half and Ambrose took up the right back spot and the game got under way. 3 minutes into the half Stokes went so close after ghosting past 2 defenders and shooting wide from the edge of the box. There was good link up play between Stokes, Pukki, Boerrigter and Biton coming to nothing. Biton had a few good moves and passé and looked ok for his first game in the hoops. Celtic had a few half chances but the second half was turning to a bore fest with St Johnstone coming at Celtic a little more. Samaras came on for Commons and striker May coming on for Davidson.

This ended up being harder than it should have been
This ended up being harder than it should have been

Samaras came on looked lively for 15 minutes running at people; the first warning sign came on 67 minutes when May headed over. Celtic were getting pushed more and more onto the back foot and it took a fine stop from Forster on 77 minutes when Chris Millar was 1 on 1 making Forster save well. The warning signs were not taken and on 81 minutes St Johnston scored, Caddis bundling the ball into the net at the back post, bad marking? Bad goalkeeping? A foul? The goal was given, 2-1 and it was 5p/10p bum time, in a game that should have been out of sight here we were fighting for a point, St Johnston brought on striker Hasselbaink and it almost worked, with May hitting the post then a good save from the rebound needed by Forster from MacKay

It was one of these games
It was one of these games, in the end, 2-1 and 3 points MORE than deserved

After Wednesday and the utter dismay and dejection after a wonderful performance the last thing we would have needed was a 2-2 draw after dominating. But we held out. 2-1 win, 3 points and joint top of the league

Let’s look forward to the next game

HH

 

Comments

  1. Hi Shaun

    Just a quick word before bed. Early start tomorrow then family commitments for most of the day. Your report sums up what I heard on the radio but probably with a little less of the CTV bias. The commentaries were fun fr a while and a pleasant alternative to the main media coverage. It is becoming a bit annoying now as the commentary is sometimes not quite a true description of play and when you are not seeing something that is not what you want. We get enough lies without them coming from our own media (I may write something on that). Anyhow, it appears to have been steamroller start followed by lazy afternoon finish. I have no idea why we lack the ability to complete the blitzkriegs of the first half hour; why we cannot pace ourselves to see out 90 minutes; why Lenny has only one game plan no matter the developments on the field; why he is determined to find a position in any game for certain players and not others depending on his mood it seems rather than what the game demands; why all the promise of youth has been loaned out or put back in the puppy kennels when a bit of youthful exuberance might just be the answer to older flagging legs. However, I make these points for discussion and not recrimination. After all, given some previous experiences, we could have been humiliated in Europe; followed that up with a domestic defeat; and been second fiddle or worse in the league table. We are in the exact opposite situation and for that we should be grateful and enjoy a good night’s sleep. Just don’t dream of the last ten minutes of games 🙂

    Thanks again for a concise and honest report, Shaun.

    H H
    Arthur

    PS A point of personal interest. I posted a blog called “I Saw Four Horsemen” which is on the blog page but have had no comments posted. It seems very unusual that there have been no visitors or someone doesn’t even say how bad it is – generally you or Wullie :). I have had problems with the site that I have mentioned to Wullie and we thought they were sorted. Can you confirm you can read the blog? No need to comment. It is just that I had another idea in mind but need to know if there is a problem with my publishing because there does not seem to be with others like yourself. I was going to contact Wullie tomorrow or Monday but thought I’d ask you since I am on here anyway. Look forward to hearing sometime tomorrow when I get home.

    H H again! And good night.

  2. If we are going to write, we have to be honest, or we are as guilty as the main stream media. That is the way I look at it. All in we got the 3 points, just. When they hit the post then Forster saved from that rebound from May, I thought 2-2 for a second, so was happy to hear the final whistle. I think sometimes we don’t give these other teams any credit Arthur. This St Johnstone side went away and beat Rosenberg in the Europa cup qualifiers and did well in another game, so are no mugs. I think the mindset of us all is we should still be beating these sites 4-0 every game. I remember a few seasons when O’Neil was the manager; we did exactly that, sometimes 5 or 6 nil. I think these days are gone, at least for now. Teams will sit in and counter us, the same as we try in Europe. The last 10 minutes I don’t think Lenny had much to work with to be fair. Sammy can be lazy and leave Izzy exposed and Boerrigter I have noticed can do the same down the right. We were missing Forrest, Ledley, Kayal and Lustig yesterday, with Matthews going off early also. Sometimes after you watch a game, sleep on it you see it different. Like these match reports. I was a bit pi$$ed off at the end because we nearly blew it, but we did deserve the 3 points. So getting torn into the players would be easy to do.
    Cheers for your comments as usual.
    I am writing left right and centre here, lol, 4 different places, getting 5 minutes when I am online to read is getting harder. Will give your blog a read and leave a reply mate.
    Hope you are enjoying your Sunday, I am, everyone is out, and I am relaxing in bed with the laptop watching back to the future trilogy 😀

    HH

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