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Football: Celtic Restore Some Pride In Beating Villarreal

Posted on: December 11, 2008

GLASGOW: Celtic restored some pride to Scottish football with a 2-0 win over ten-men Villarreal in Wedneday’s Champions League Group E clash at Parkhead.

The win was the first time in 14 matches that a Scottish side had won in either the UEFA Cup or Champions League this season, one of the nation’s poorest ever runs in European competition.

Scotland’s UEFA co-efficient – or ranking – which determines the number of clubs can compete in Europe has taken a hammering this season as Rangers, Motherwell, Hibernian and Queen of the South all exited Europe at the first hurdle.

But Celtic’s victory – their first in eight Champions League matches – should boost future Scottish champions’ chances of keeping an automatic place in the group stages of the competition.

After last month’s defeat to Aalborg, Celtic had nothing to play for in their clash with Villarreal but goals from Shaun Maloney and Aiden McGeady clinched the game for the home side as Guille Franco was sent off.

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan said the win had helped get rid of his frustration at his side’s previous performances in the Champions League this season.

“That match was there to make us feel better about ourselves and help us prepare for Saturday and it all worked out well,” Strachan said.

“It was nice to watch at times and they were lovely to watch as they are a good side.”

Villarreal manager Manuel Pellegrini said his side had started the game well.

“We had three or four good chances and then Celtic managed to take advantage of an offside position to score,” the Chilean said.

“I didn’t see the sending off so I can’t comment on it but I really think it changed the course of the game.”

Villarreal carved out the first real chance of the match after 11 minutes when Franco narrowly missed connecting with a Mati Fernandez cross at the far post.

Celtic took the lead in the 14th minute through a header from Maloney.

Goalkeeper Sebastian Viera allowed a Mark Wilson cross from the left to slip through his hands and the smallest man on the park leaped up to head it into the net.

Villarreal were reduced to ten men when Franco saw red in the 35th minute for an off-the-ball incident involving Gary Caldwell. The striker lashed out with his elbow which was spotted by the linesman and referee Claudio Circhetta gave Franco his marching orders.

McGeady doubled Celtic’s lead in first-half injury time. The Irish international picked up the ball at the half-way line and drove at the Villarreal defence before unleashing an angled low drive past Viera from the edge of the box.

Villarreal substitute Nihat Kahveci came close to pulling one back for the Spanish side in the 56th minute when his first-time volley from a Ariel Ibagaza corner went just wide of Artur Boruc’s near post.

The Polish keeper then made a magnificent save from Nihat. The striker beat the offside trap to go one-on-one with Boruc but the keeper stood tall to block his shot in the 70th minute.

Despite dominating possession Celtic couldn’t add to their first-half total.

Results:

Manchester United (ENG) 2 Aalborg (DEN) 2

Celtic (SCO) 2 Villarreal (ESP) 0

Steaua Bucharest (ROM) 0 Fiorentina (ITA) 1

Lyon (FRA) 2 Bayern Munich (GER) 3

FC Porto (POR) 2 Arsenal (ENG) 0

Dynamo Kiev (UKR) 1 Fenerbahce (TUR) 0

Juventus (ITA) 0 BATE Borisov (BLR) 0

Real Madrid (ESP) 3 Zenit Saint-Petersburg (RUS) 0

– AFP/de

Channel News Asia

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Football: Celtic Restore Some Pride In Beating Villarreal

Posted on: December 11, 2008

GLASGOW: Celtic restored some pride to Scottish football with a 2-0 win over ten-men Villarreal in Wedneday’s Champions League Group E clash at Parkhead.

The win was the first time in 14 matches that a Scottish side had won in either the UEFA Cup or Champions League this season, one of the nation’s poorest ever runs in European competition.

Scotland’s UEFA co-efficient – or ranking – which determines the number of clubs can compete in Europe has taken a hammering this season as Rangers, Motherwell, Hibernian and Queen of the South all exited Europe at the first hurdle.

But Celtic’s victory – their first in eight Champions League matches – should boost future Scottish champions’ chances of keeping an automatic place in the group stages of the competition.

After last month’s defeat to Aalborg, Celtic had nothing to play for in their clash with Villarreal but goals from Shaun Maloney and Aiden McGeady clinched the game for the home side as Guille Franco was sent off.

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan said the win had helped get rid of his frustration at his side’s previous performances in the Champions League this season.

“That match was there to make us feel better about ourselves and help us prepare for Saturday and it all worked out well,” Strachan said.

“It was nice to watch at times and they were lovely to watch as they are a good side.”

Villarreal manager Manuel Pellegrini said his side had started the game well.

“We had three or four good chances and then Celtic managed to take advantage of an offside position to score,” the Chilean said.

“I didn’t see the sending off so I can’t comment on it but I really think it changed the course of the game.”

Villarreal carved out the first real chance of the match after 11 minutes when Franco narrowly missed connecting with a Mati Fernandez cross at the far post.

Celtic took the lead in the 14th minute through a header from Maloney.

Goalkeeper Sebastian Viera allowed a Mark Wilson cross from the left to slip through his hands and the smallest man on the park leaped up to head it into the net.

Villarreal were reduced to ten men when Franco saw red in the 35th minute for an off-the-ball incident involving Gary Caldwell. The striker lashed out with his elbow which was spotted by the linesman and referee Claudio Circhetta gave Franco his marching orders.

McGeady doubled Celtic’s lead in first-half injury time. The Irish international picked up the ball at the half-way line and drove at the Villarreal defence before unleashing an angled low drive past Viera from the edge of the box.

Villarreal substitute Nihat Kahveci came close to pulling one back for the Spanish side in the 56th minute when his first-time volley from a Ariel Ibagaza corner went just wide of Artur Boruc’s near post.

The Polish keeper then made a magnificent save from Nihat. The striker beat the offside trap to go one-on-one with Boruc but the keeper stood tall to block his shot in the 70th minute.

Despite dominating possession Celtic couldn’t add to their first-half total.

Results:

Manchester United (ENG) 2 Aalborg (DEN) 2

Celtic (SCO) 2 Villarreal (ESP) 0

Steaua Bucharest (ROM) 0 Fiorentina (ITA) 1

Lyon (FRA) 2 Bayern Munich (GER) 3

FC Porto (POR) 2 Arsenal (ENG) 0

Dynamo Kiev (UKR) 1 Fenerbahce (TUR) 0

Juventus (ITA) 0 BATE Borisov (BLR) 0

Real Madrid (ESP) 3 Zenit Saint-Petersburg (RUS) 0

– AFP/de

Channel News Asia

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Football: Celtic Restore Some Pride In Beating Villarreal

Posted on: December 11, 2008

GLASGOW: Celtic restored some pride to Scottish football with a 2-0 win over ten-men Villarreal in Wedneday’s Champions League Group E clash at Parkhead.

The win was the first time in 14 matches that a Scottish side had won in either the UEFA Cup or Champions League this season, one of the nation’s poorest ever runs in European competition.

Scotland’s UEFA co-efficient – or ranking – which determines the number of clubs can compete in Europe has taken a hammering this season as Rangers, Motherwell, Hibernian and Queen of the South all exited Europe at the first hurdle.

But Celtic’s victory – their first in eight Champions League matches – should boost future Scottish champions’ chances of keeping an automatic place in the group stages of the competition.

After last month’s defeat to Aalborg, Celtic had nothing to play for in their clash with Villarreal but goals from Shaun Maloney and Aiden McGeady clinched the game for the home side as Guille Franco was sent off.

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan said the win had helped get rid of his frustration at his side’s previous performances in the Champions League this season.

“That match was there to make us feel better about ourselves and help us prepare for Saturday and it all worked out well,” Strachan said.

“It was nice to watch at times and they were lovely to watch as they are a good side.”

Villarreal manager Manuel Pellegrini said his side had started the game well.

“We had three or four good chances and then Celtic managed to take advantage of an offside position to score,” the Chilean said.

“I didn’t see the sending off so I can’t comment on it but I really think it changed the course of the game.”

Villarreal carved out the first real chance of the match after 11 minutes when Franco narrowly missed connecting with a Mati Fernandez cross at the far post.

Celtic took the lead in the 14th minute through a header from Maloney.

Goalkeeper Sebastian Viera allowed a Mark Wilson cross from the left to slip through his hands and the smallest man on the park leaped up to head it into the net.

Villarreal were reduced to ten men when Franco saw red in the 35th minute for an off-the-ball incident involving Gary Caldwell. The striker lashed out with his elbow which was spotted by the linesman and referee Claudio Circhetta gave Franco his marching orders.

McGeady doubled Celtic’s lead in first-half injury time. The Irish international picked up the ball at the half-way line and drove at the Villarreal defence before unleashing an angled low drive past Viera from the edge of the box.

Villarreal substitute Nihat Kahveci came close to pulling one back for the Spanish side in the 56th minute when his first-time volley from a Ariel Ibagaza corner went just wide of Artur Boruc’s near post.

The Polish keeper then made a magnificent save from Nihat. The striker beat the offside trap to go one-on-one with Boruc but the keeper stood tall to block his shot in the 70th minute.

Despite dominating possession Celtic couldn’t add to their first-half total.

Results:

Manchester United (ENG) 2 Aalborg (DEN) 2

Celtic (SCO) 2 Villarreal (ESP) 0

Steaua Bucharest (ROM) 0 Fiorentina (ITA) 1

Lyon (FRA) 2 Bayern Munich (GER) 3

FC Porto (POR) 2 Arsenal (ENG) 0

Dynamo Kiev (UKR) 1 Fenerbahce (TUR) 0

Juventus (ITA) 0 BATE Borisov (BLR) 0

Real Madrid (ESP) 3 Zenit Saint-Petersburg (RUS) 0

– AFP/de

Channel News Asia

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