Match Report -
Celtic peform well
By Iain Benson
Celtic put their week of turmoil behind them and faced a strong Manchester City reserve squad that started with Premiership stars, including the fourteen million pound striker, Benjani.

Celtic started with Ross Atkins in goal, and he performed very well.

Considering the talent on show in the City line-up, it was Celtic who opened the first chance of the game, with a corner being cleared as far as Warren Peyton's who's low drive was very well saved by City keeper Gonzalez. Followed up by claiming the looping ball off the head of Craig Hobson. However, it was the visitors who opened the scoring a few minutes later, with an excellent move that culminated with Benjani free in the box, only for Ross Atkins to pull off a wonder stop. Unfortunately for the keeper, the ball fell to John Edmundsson, who rifled home, with Steve Woods unable to clear off the line.

Connor Jennings was denied by an excellent stop after being put through one-on-one with the City keeper, whilst Atkins continued his good performance with a string of excellent stops, flying a full stretch to tip over Scott Kay's rasping drive from distance, and then getting across the face of his goal to block Benjani's point blank header off the corner. After stopping Robbie Mak's effort, Atkins deserved a bit of luck and he got it when Karl Moore had the freedom of the net to aim at and hit the post instead. Just before the interval, Ben Mee tripped Connor Jennings at the edge of the box, and Andy Smart's excellent low curling free kick required a stunning save from Gonzalez.

After the interval, Atkins again denied Moore, before Moore tried a twenty yard curling effort that was destined for the top corner until Atkins flew through the air to tip it away for a corner. Moore did set up City's second, though, with a curling centred ball that substitute Dedryk Boyata turned goal ward with a half turn volley that took him around Graeme Law. A few moments later and Moore must have been wondering what he had to do to beat Atkins when he was put through one-on-one and the Celtic keeper snatched the ball off his feet.

Celtic's good work finally paid dividends when a corner was floated in, kept in by Briggs, and smashed against the underside of the bar by Joe O'Neill, Gonzalez clawed it away as far as Michael Carr who came in and smashed the ball into the roof of the goal to pull one back for Celtic.

Celtic made a good account of themselves, and showed how far they'd come since being beaten 7-0 by a weaker City reserve side.

Celtic squad from: Ross Atkins, Greg Wilkinson, Andy Smart, Steve Woods, Warren Peyton, John Hardiker, Paul Ennis, Michael Carr, Craig Hobson, Connor Jennings, Osebi Abadaki, Joe O'Neill, Graeme Law, Joel Bembo-Lita, Keith Briggs, Dave Hankin, Matty Barlow, Matt Chadwick, Richard Battersby, Mike Brickell

City Squad from: David Gonzalez, Javan Vidal, Greg Cunningham, Ben Mee, Nebum Oneuah, Scott Kay, Robbie Mak, Abdi Ibrahim, John Edmundsson, Benjani, Karl Moore, Kieran Trippier, Toby Johanson, Jack Rodshaw, James Poole, Dedryk Boyata, Andrew Tuite, Paul Marshall, Alex Nimely

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