Home » So near to a win and yet so far for impressive Celtic again, but away point far from a disaster

So near to a win and yet so far for impressive Celtic again, but away point far from a disaster

by fastnewz

WINNING away from dwelling within the Champions League – even in a impartial venue – is not any straightforward feat. Particularly for Celtic over time.

This was their thirty first away match within the group phases, and so they have solely ever triumphed twice earlier than on their travels at this level of the competitors, shedding 25 of these video games.

So, the very fact they obtained simply their fourth draw of that sequence right here in Warsaw in opposition to Shakhtar Donetsk, and their first level on the board on this marketing campaign, is to not be sniffed at. However nonetheless…

There might be a nagging remorse little doubt in Ange Postecoglou’s thoughts and in these of his gamers, who should really feel that this was an enormous alternative missed.

It had all appeared so good for Celtic when Reo Hatate’s low cross was helped into the web by Shakhtar Donetsk defender Artem Bondarenko after 10 minutes, a simply reward for a gap half hour during which the Scottish champion had been fully dominant.

This Shakhtar crew may not be world beaters, however they did have a particular expertise inside their ranks, and the vastly spectacular Mykhaylo Mudryk was the person to tug his crew degree on the counter to briefly knock Celtic astray.

They regrouped, and had been far the higher facet within the second half too with out carrying fairly the identical aim risk, and therein lies the rub. Celtic had been punished for not taking their probabilities in opposition to Actual Madrid on matchday one, and so they had been to a lesser extent right here once more.

It could show to be a beneficial level within the last shake-up, however there may be completely little doubt that it might, and possibly ought to, have been a vastly vital three.

The one shock in Ange Postecoglou’s line-up was the inclusion of Sead Haksabanovic, with the winger being handed his first begin on the best forward of Liel Abada and Daizen Maeda.

Shakhtar had been unchanged, unsurprisingly, from the crew that shocked RB Leipzig on matchday one, that means former Celtic man Marian Shved was once more on the best wing of a crew set as much as take up strain and hit on the counter.

The pre-match hopes of Shakhtar Donetsk supervisor Igor Jovicevic that Legia Warsaw’s stadium could be ‘full to the brim’ had been greater than slightly optimistic ultimately, with the stands maybe slightly over half full save for the pocket of 2000 or so Celtic supporters tucked into one of many corners.

There was to be no minute of silence following the demise of Queen Elizabeth II, and it was most likely simply as nicely. Banners held aloft by the Inexperienced Brigade previous to kick off consoling Michael Fagan for his loss and proclaiming ‘F*** the Crown’ had been pretty dependable indicators that it could not have handed with out incident. The gamers had been carrying black armbands although.

Celtic appeared sharp from the get-go, and had referred to as Shakhtar keeper Anatoliy Trubin into motion twice and are available inside a whisker of scoring all within the opening 4 minutes.

Some neat play between Haksabanovic and Greg Taylor down the left then noticed the latter hearth throughout the six-yard space, the place solely a slight spark off a Shakhtar toe diverted the ball away from Kyogo awaiting a faucet in.

It appeared a matter of time earlier than they took the lead, and it was when Shakhtar tried to launch their first actual counter that they themselves had been accomplished on the break.

Josip Juranovic gained a 50/50 and his lengthy clearance discovered Haksabanovic in acres of house out on the left. Hatate was busting a intestine to rise up in help, and the winger discovered him with a superbly timed ball as he underlapped into the realm. The midfielder tried to search out Kyogo within the center, however the ball cannoned off Bondarenko as he desperately tried to chop it out and trickled into the web.

The aim was actually at least Celtic deserved although for a vastly spectacular begin to the sport.

The Celtic press was giving the Shakhtar defence all types of issues, and Kyogo got here inside inches of catching out the keeper as he tried to play out from the again.

From nothing although, simply earlier than the half hour, Celtic got a pointy reminder that you just can not swap off for a second at this degree, regardless of how snug chances are you’ll really feel in a match.

A stunning threaded move from Shakhtar left-back Yukhym Konoplia noticed three Celtic gamers attempt to fail to chop it out, leaving dangerman Mudryk racing in behind Juranovic. He superior on Joe Hart unchallenged and completed with aplomb, inserting the ball excessive into the web to present Shakhtar an unlikely leveller.

Celtic – who’ve now saved just one clear sheet in 34 away matches within the Champions League – had been immediately rocking, and Shakhtar had the ball within the internet once more moments later as Mudryk crossed for Shved to complete on the second try, however they had been saved by the offside flag.

Haksabanovic was a waning affect because the half wore on, and Postecoglou changed him with the power of Maeda on the interval.

Celtic had been extra measured after settling down on the break, and obtained a few sighters on aim by way of the hitherto peripheral Jota, and the winger then produced a mazy run to get all the way in which into the Shakhtar space earlier than his shot was blocked.

Shakhtar had been sitting of their form primed to interrupt, however Postecoglou sensed {that a} recent impetus may simply enable his facet to edge in entrance, and he despatched on Aaron Mooy, David Turnbull and Giorgos Giakoumakis.

The recent legs helped, and Celtic had been swarming on the ‘hosts’ once more, successful the ball excessive to permit Jota one other hip-swinging run into the realm, however he slipped on the very important second as he shot.

That had been the story of the evening, with Celtic simply missing that last contact, as occurred once more as Giakoumakis headed down for Maeda to scissor-kick huge with assistance from a deflection.

After which got here the prospect. Callum McGregor performed Taylor in on the left and the full-back picked out a superb cut-back for Giakoumakis, however with time to take a contact and decide his spot, the ahead fired excessive and huge of the keeper’s prime right-hand nook.

Extremely, Celtic normal one other opening, Maeda this time firing huge on the stretch from Juranovic’s low cross. So close to, and but to this point. However the efficiency, and the one level, had been removed from a catastrophe.

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