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Celtic Game 1 2007

Football Aid Championships, Saturday June 2nd, Celtic Park

Celtic (Home) 4 – Celtic (Away) 12

Another rousing performance from Ryan Sloan, marking his second appearance for Football Aid, and a hat trick from Paul Rice powered Bertie Auld’s side to a dazzling victory over McBride’s men.

Sloan opened the scoring after only 3 minutes, the ball cut back to the striker after a sweet break down the right wing, allowing him to hammer home Away’s first goal.

But Home – with Andy Walker in defence – immediately hit back, bundling the ball over the line two minutes later to make it 1 all. (Please email details of the goal scorer to tessa.burns@footballaid.com.)

Sloan’s striking partner, McMahon, nearly put Away ahead in the 12th minute, pouncing on a poor clearance from keeper Warwick but his chip hit the bar much to the relief of the Home crowd.

The resulting corner however, allowed McMahon to get his goal, the forward drilling the ball into the back of the net to make it 1-2.

A superb cross in from the left saw Sloan netting his second, the ball helped over the line by keeper Warwick to further Away’s advantage.

Home pulled a goal back thanks to a superb strike from Anton Gallagher. The elated forward describing it himself after the match as a ’20-yard thunderbolt that brought echoes of McStay in his prime…’

But straight after, a cross/shot from the right caught Warwick off guard and the ball looped over the keeper to make it 2-4. Please email details of the goal scorer to tessa.burns@footballaid.com.)

Sloan came close on the half hour, sent clear for a 1-1 with Warwick but his shot went wide of the far post. He got his hat trick minutes later though, a defensive mix up leaving the ball at his feet to slot home from close range to make it 2-5.

The Home team were not going to give up without a fight. Gallagher looking dangerous with a great run downfield but his resulting attempt flashed wide. Greenhorn’s charge down the right on the 40-minute mark looked promising too, his cross effortlessly met by a rising McKever, but the striker’s acrobatic effort skimmed the goal.

Just before half time, Auld’s men swept forward again. Jackson the architect with a glorious ball through to Sloan who was clear on goal. A late tackle brought him down in the box and the resulting penalty was confidently converted to make it 2-6 going into the break

The second half went much the same way as the first with the Home team battling to hold back the bustling Away side. Conor Connolly smashing in their 7th goal of the game after only one minute of play and Rice scoring the first of his trio straight after – the midfielder picking up an easy tap-in from Jackson and coolly sliding it into the empty net.

Home’s fighting spirit was apparent throughout, Gilbert nabbing a goal for the valiant side with some silky skills in the 52nd minute. A ball over the top setting him clear before letting rip with a powerful shot that swung past keeper Quinn.

Soon after, Away’s goal fest continued, silky skipper Devoy slotting in a scorcher, thanks to a great pass by Sloan in the 75th minute.

Shortly after, a rather over enthusiastic tackle from Andy Walker brought down Rice in the area and the resulting penalty was easily delivered to make it 3-11.

Rice then completed the rout and netted his hat-trick with a great run through before slotting the ball in to the near post.

In true Hoops style, McBride’s men fought to the dying end and their hard work paid off with a sensational goal by McKever in the dying minutes - the striker hammering home the ball off the back post to make the final score 4-12.

Home Team: B. Warwick, C. Thompson, A. Walker, P. Walker, D. Walker, M. O’Neill, P. Feeney, A. McKever, A. Gallagher, D. Hannaway, D. Greenhorn, R. Gilbert, J. Waugh, K. McGowan,

Mascot: B. Walker

Away Team: D. Quinn, M. Clarke, D. Jackson, B. Caplan, M. Jewell, P. Higgins, P. Rice, C. Connolly, L. McMahon, R. Caplan, R. Sloan, M. Brown, F. Devoy, G. O’Hagan,

Mascot: D. Quinn