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Double Dutch But Celts Go Through. AZ Alkmaar 2-1 Celtic 26/08/21

Discussion in 'TalkCeltic News' started by packybhoy, Aug 27, 2021.

By packybhoy on Aug 27, 2021 at 4:41 PM
  1. packybhoy Administrator Administrator

    Oct 15, 2011
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    In your heart
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Danny McGrain

    Thursday 26th August 2021

    K.O. 7.15pm (U.K.)

    AFAS Stadion. Alkmaar Zaanstreek



    Goals: Kyogo (3) AZ. Aboukhlal (6) Starfelt (26 OG)

    Celtic took to the field in their beautiful all green away kit in Alkmaar on a nice summer evening to face AZ with a two goal advantage. The Bhoys had to work hard in the first leg for that 2-0 win and tonight would be no different and the end prize would be qualification for this season’s Europa League.

    Celtic started in the best way possible and grabbed an early goal that came in all of three minutes. A brilliant pass by Ralston put Abada away on a break down the right. He was joined in the break by Ryan Christie and Kyogo who quickly bore down on the keeper and a perfect pass by Abada from the right saw the Japanese Bhoy sweep it into the net to make it 0-1. That made it seven goals in seven games for Kyogo.


    A minute later Greg Taylor was lying injured in the Celtic box but managed to get back to his feet and dust himself down. He did seem to be playing on with an injury to his shoulder though. Celtic’s lead didn’t last long as they conceded the equaliser in 6 minutes. A long ball out by the AZ keeper saw Stephen Welsh chest the ball down to Joe Hart on the edge of his box. Hart hesitated and Aboukhlal took advantage of his generosity and duly robbed him to score.

    Taylor wouldn’t hold out for too long either and had to be replaced in 24 minutes by Young Montgomery. The lad has received more game time than he would have expected so early on and that serves to highlight how light we are for certain positions.

    Both teams had chances as they were set up for an attacking style which left gaps in areas at the back. On 26 minutes a ball was put into the Celtic box from the right wing. New Swedish defender Starfelt spun to block the ball but only managed to put it into his own net past Hart after the ball had hit off his planted leg. 2-1 to AZ and game on.


    Celtic had chances but put it wide of both posts and over the crossbar. AZ came close to a third in 43 minutes but Hart got down to his left to make a fine save. 45 minutes Christie played Kyogo in only for the wee man to blast over the bar. Half Time 2-1.


    The second half saw Alkmaar playing with intent as they pinned Celtic back on their heels. The Hoops only got the odd reprieve in the first 15 minutes of the half when they broke away into the AZ half. The referee wasn’t too kind to Celtic either with some meaty challenges going unpunished. We were in a game and AZ were relentless pushing for the goal to get back level. Hart was busy and made a couple of decent saves.


    The game was crying out for Edouard to come on and hold the ball up and help Celtic regain momentum. Ange made the call on 60 minutes when he replaced Rogic. Almost immediately it gave the Bhoys a good balance back in the setup. A special mention to Christie as it looks like a switch has been flicked this season as we see a hungry and more determined player. Even on 87 minutes he was working his socks off, harrying and trying to get the team forward up the pitch.

    Celtic were living on the edge most of the second half and were holding on by the fingernails at times. We definitely need some players and a lot of work on the defensive side of the game as we made two glaring mistakes in this game and both were punished. These are the fine margins between success and defeat. Celtic managed to hold on to win the tie 3-2 on aggregate over both legs. The hard work done at Celtic Park was definitely the difference but relying on young players at the back like Welsh & Montgomery will cost us at times. The lads are still learning on their feet and can’t receive much criticism in that regard but experience is required. Jullien coming back can’t happen quick enough for me.


    Celtic were drawn in Group G on Friday afternoon with Germans Bayer Leverkusen, Spaniards Real Betis and Hungry’s Ferencvaros. The latter is a chance to redeem ourselves after a poor display against the same team last season. As I said if we sort out the defence then we will be well prepared. I understand there will be times we will be caught because of our attacking style but the stupid mistakes need sorted. We play more dominant football with Edouard on the pitch and so if we sell him a similar type of player will be needed. Overall though a decent group with some great games to come. I especially look forward to meeting our long time friends Betis.


    AZ ALKMAAR: Verhulst, Suguwara, Letschert, Martins indi, Witri, Midtsjø, De Wit, Koopmeiners, Aboukhlal, Pavlidis, Karlsson. Subs: Vindahl-Jensen, Chatzidiakos, Reus, Evjan, Classi, Taabouni, Reijnders, Oosting, Gudmundsson, Koopmeiners, Beukemer, Poku.

    CELTIC: Hart, Ralston, Starfelt, Welsh, Taylor, McGregor, Abada, Rogic, Turnbull, Christie, Furuhashi. Subs: Barkas, Bitton, Ajeti, Soro, Edouard, Bolingoli, Urhoghide, Bain, Shaw, Robertson, Montgomery.

    Formation: AZ 4-3-3. Celtic 4-1-4-1

    Possession: AZ 53% Celtic 47%

    Shots: AZ 14. Celtic 11

    Shots on target: AZ 4. Celtic 2

    Assist: Abada (3)

    By Packybhoy
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2021
    The Prof, bagforlife and tarboltontim like this.