The warning signs were there from the off when Johnson burst past the defence and had a half-decent strike that forced Pettinger into an early save. However, in the opening exchanges Celtic were giving as good as they got, and Taylor had to be on hand to head Flynn?s long throw wide for a corner that Hume got his head onto, but put wide. Winn put through Ellington, who controlled well and dropped it off to Brodie, his shot was unstoppable, but narrowly over. Wharton got away with the first of the penalty shouts denied to Celtic, when he stiff armed Brodie after the Celtic man was through into the box.
Seddon performed the first of many runs into the box to latch onto a through ball, with Sykes coming across he snatched at the shot, putting it into the side netting. Johnson tried for a clever touch when Pickford?s cross was behind him; his back flick was straight at Pettinger. The warnings had not been heeded and Wharton put the ball across the face, Pettinger got across, but Seddon was one-on-one now, and made no mistake putting the ball into the far corner. There was a glorious chance for Seddon to double his tally when Clee?s ball through was missed by his slide. Clee tried again, leaving the Celtic defence stranded, and Seddon through on goal, but this time he shot wide.
Seddon had been given the key to the Celtic defence in this match, and he made no mistake with his third effort. Again, it was a ball across the defence that left the blue shirts stranded allowing Seddon to tap the ball into the net.
Celtic were by no means out of it at this point, and Brodie?s powerful effort was blocked on-route by Davis, the ricochet falling to Hume, it was a wonderful strike matched by an equally wonderful full-stretch tip over by Dootson. After Winn was fouled by Wharton, the free kick fell into the box, Ellington turned and shot, and somehow from close range Dootson stretched out a leg and put it wide.
Just twenty minutes in, and Hyde were handed the goal that effectively sealed the match when Parr overstretched to reach the ball and Clee went over Parr?s leg. Seddon stepped up and put the ball low to the right to claim his hat-trick.
This was added to moments later when a long throw was diverted towards goal by Flitcroft, a good parry by Pettinger, but it fell kindly for Johnson stood unmarked at the back post for yet another tap in. Celtic were four goals down and half an hour had not been played.
Celtic had Pettinger to thank when Seddon was not picked up again just before half time, Flitcroft found him, he took the shot and Pettinger?s reactions allowed him to save and hold onto the ball.
Celtic needed an early goal to get back into the match in the second half, and whatever Reed said to them in the dressing room had the desired effect. Celtic raced down the field, Winn found Ellington at the edge of the box, he smashed his shot into the back of the net with Dootson nowhere near it. Celtic immediately followed this up with Hanley (on for the injured Brodie) beating Lynch with a deft touch, lofting the ball across to the middle of the goal where Hume came barrelling in and he smashed his header into the back of the net to halve the deficit. Celtic were on fire and Hyde looked rocked.
What Hyde needed was another goal, and the Celtic defence gave it to them. Clee?s run and shot, Pettinger blocked, but there was Seddon again unmarked at the back post, and he added to his tally with another tapped in goal to put the score at 5-2.
However, the goal didn?t dampen Celtic?s belief in themselves, and they kept attacking the Hyde defence. Krief got some space, but couldn?t get the right contact allowing Dootson an easy catch. A free kick from Krief was well worked, with Hume dropping the ball into the path of Ellington and once again the Duke smacked the ball past Dootson to reduce the arrears to two goals at 5-3.
Johnson could have increased the margin back to three when Clee found him at the edge of the six yard box, but somehow he skied the shot over the bar. Seddon went for his fifth as the Celtic defence stood and stared, but with only Pettinger to beat his shot struck the outside of the post. Celtic may have had belief in themselves as an attacking force, but Hyde were still getting the free run of the Celtic box.
Hume nodded a flicked on throw in across the face and though Ellington threw himself at the ball, he couldn?t quite claim his hattrick and put Celtic only a goal behind. After Wharton fouled Hume on the edge of the box, Krief?s free kick failed to trouble Dootson. However, possibly the match changing moment came when Ellington latched onto Smith?s through ball, three yards from goal, with only Dootson to beat, Wharton slid in from behind and sliced Ellington?s feet from under him, Ellington?s momentum carried him off the pitch, and the referee waved away the protests about not giving a cast-iron penalty. Had that been given, Celtic may well have got something out of the game.
Smith teed up a chance for Hume, Davis was able to block. Black then put in a superb ball over the defence; Hume beat the offside trap but missed his shot. Smith then forced Adams into conceding a corner, and the chance for Celtic turned into a game killing goal for Hyde. They broke quickly and swiftly, Seddon putting the ball into the path of Gedman; one-on-one with Pettinger he made it six for Hyde.
What with the penalty decision and that goal, the fight went out of Celtic. They still created chances, but from set pieces. Wharton slid through the back of Krief and Black?s free kick was headed goalward by Hume, only to be saved by Dootson. A lack of fight didn?t excuse the woeful defending when Gedman simply ran past Flynn, put the ball through an empty penalty area for Seddon to tap in for his fifth and Hyde?s seventh.
There was a basic lack of defensive savvy by Celtic, not picking up one of the league?s top strikers on any of his runs. Seddon will not have an easier game in his career. Celtic?s spirited comeback in the second half was deflated by a denied penalty appeal, but with the defence as porous as it was, had Celtic got five, there was still every chance that Hyde would have got seven.