Our 2nd game of the day at Celtic Park was always unlikely to match the goal-fest from Game 1, and so it proved with the teams finishing tied at 1-1 after 90mins. However despite the lack of goals it was a fantastic end to end game with plenty of chances at both ends, and it was only the excellent goalkeeping skills of Brian Leishman and Gerry McGill and the impressive defending from both teams that kept the scoring to a minimum.
Date: Sunday 3rd May 2015
Venue: Celtic Park
Celtic (Home) vs Celtic (Away)
Kick Off: 14:30 pm
Match Officials: Craig Napier, Ryan Oliver, Russell Murphy & Martin Hristov
Playing conditions were still excellent for our 2nd game of the day at Celtic Park and after a quick huddle to rouse their supporters the Hoops kicked off the match. After the goal-fest in Game 1, the fans were expecting more of the same, however the early play suggested Game 2 was going to be much tighter.
The Home team almost created an opportunity with only a few mins on the clock, however Away keeper Gerry McGill was alert to the danger and came sliding out to collect the ball on the edge of his box.
Both teams were playing the ball about well and it didn’t take long for the Away team to open the scoring. Just 6mins were on the clock when No 8 Alan Woodrow showed great skill to dribble his way into the left side of the box and when his initial effort was blocked he managed to get in a cross at the 2nd attempt, the ball was cleared high into the air to the edge of the box and Away No 10 Garry Pearson was in the perfect position to slam home an unstoppable volley from 20 yards (0-1)!
The Home team responded well and a snap shot from No 11 John Adderley severely tested Gerry McGill, however the keeper was up to the task. The Away team then came very close to increasing their lead after a succession of corners put the Home team under real pressure. The ball fell to Alan Woodrow on the edge of the box and the No 8 showed fantastic skill to work some space for a shot, his excellent right foot effort looked destined for the top corner, however it crashed off the bar and away to safety!
Minutes later and it was the lively John Adderley who was to be denied by the cross bar when his opportunistic effort from 30 yards looked like sailing into the net, however it wasn’t to be and with 20mins on the clock the score remained 0-1 to the Away team.
The Home team continued to press and it took an excellent finger tipped save from McGill to deny Home No 6 Michael Corcoran when the midfielder surged into the box and let fly. It was end to end stuff now and his opposite number Brian Leishman also made a smart stop to deny goal-scorer Pearson.
The Father and Son combination of David and Jack Gordon were keeping things tight at the back and when David played an accurate long ball down the park to Steven Foreman the No 10 took the ball down brilliantly before unleashing a fierce low effort, however Gerry McGill was equal to the task again, palming the ball round the post. John Adderley was next to test the impressive Irish keeper with another dangerous effort from the left side of the box, however McGill excelled again, making smart stop at his near post.
The Home team continued to press and when the resulting corner wasn’t cleared properly Adderley was alert to the opportunity, he skipped past a defender and raced into the box, however his low effort fizzed just past the near post. The classy Home No 6 Michael Corcoran was running the show now and his pin-point cross picked out the head of No 9 Paul Clark, however the striker’s diving effort was just off target.
Corcoran fired in another efforts soon afterwards, however the expertly positioned McGill gathered it comfortably. The Away team were hanging on now and it looked for all the world that the Home team would get their equaliser when Joe Sultana played a clever one two with Steven Foreman, however the fullback couldn’t quite get his effort away and McGill gathered again.
Despite the low score-line the players were providing fantastic entertainment for their fans and the game was a great watch for the Hoops fans in the stands. There was just time for one last effort from the Home team, however Captain Jack Gordon’s rasping effort from distance flew just wide.
The referee’s whistle drew the 1st half to a close and both players marched off for a well earned rest. The Away team will have been hoping that their attacking efforts would bear fruit in the 2nd half.
Half Time: Celtic (Home) 0 - 1 Celtic (Away)
The Hoops came out strongly in the 2nd half, determined to grab the equaliser their play deserved and they fashioned an opportunity within seconds of the restart when Adderley played in his strike partner Clark on the left side of the box, however the No 9’s effort was just too high.
The classy Home No 10 Steven Foreman was next to threaten when he stepped past a defender on the edge of the box and let fly, however his well struck effort flew just past the far post. The big midfielder tried his luck again minutes later, but McGill was perfectly positioned again to deny him with a comfortable save.
John Adderley threated soon afterwards when he danced past a defender and fired in an effort, however the Home striker’s shot was high and wide. The standard of the play from both sides was excellent, and the Away side continued to pressed for a 2nd goal as well, however it was the Home side who finally got the goal their efforts deserved. A long kick-out by GK Brian Leishman on 60mins was controlled magnificently by Steven Foreman and the No 10 turned and played an inch perfect ball for John Adderley to run onto, the striker raced into the box and fired an unstoppable shot past the diving McGill to get his side back on terms (1-1).
Both sides continued to press for the decisive goal and when Steven Foreman found himself free on the left edge of the box he fired in a powerful effort towards the far post, however Gerry McGill was again equal to his effort, diving to his left to parry the ball away. The Away team responded well though, Kev Wright did well to evade the Home defence and play in strike partner Ryan McDonald on the left edge of the box, however his well struck effort was comfortably saved by Brian Leishman in the Home goal.
The Home defence’s high line was catching the Away attack offside regularly now and both defences were holding up brilliantly against the attacking efforts of their opponents. The Home team came very close to breaking the deadlock when Steven Foreman stretched out a leg to try to divert a cross from the right goalwards, however it flashed past the left hand post, much to the relief of the Home team.
With the minutes ticking down both sides were desperate to grab the winner and when the skilful Away No 5 Padraig O’Flaherty went on a mazy run and charged into the box it looked for all the world like he was going to earn his side a famous win, however the defender’s effort was just too high and sailed over the bar.
The Away team kept pressing and when Colin Thompson swung a dangerous cross into the box with under a minute to go, Garry Pearson’s glancing header looked destined for the net, however Home keeper Brian Leishman somehow pulled off an incredible reaction save to tip the ball over the bar!
The danger was cleared and the referee’s whistle brought the game to an end moments later with the teams tied at 1 goal apiece. Despite the low score-line it had been a hugely entertaining game with plenty of chances at both ends. However impressive goalkeeping and expertly marshalled defences had kept the goals to a minimum and when the Celtic players left the pitch each and every one of them received a rousing reception from their fans.
Full time: Celtic (Home) 1 - 1 Celtic (Away)
Man of the Match (Home): Hugh Sneddon
Man of the Match (Away): Gerry McGill
Moment of the Match: Brian Leishman
Home Team: Brian Leishman, Joe Sultana, Jack Gordon (C), David Gordon, Michael Corcoran, Michael McCready, James Gallagher, Paul Clark, Steven Foreman, John Adderley, Matthew Connors, Hugh Sneddon, William Hanly
Home Mascot: Callum Adderley
Away Team: Gerry McGill, Kevin Jordan, Chris McLaren, Padraig O'Flaherty, William McDonald, Steven McIntyre, Alan Woodrow, Ryan William McDonald, Garry Pearson, Kev Wright (C), Michael Dickson, Kevin Dickson, Colin Thompson, Mark O'Callaghan
Away Mascot: Liam McIntyre