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  • Celtic Under-17s lift the Glasgow Cup

    Celtic Under-17s lift the Glasgow Cup

    By: Mark Henderson on 09 May, 2011 21:26

  • Glasgow Cup Final
    Monday, May 9, 2011
    Celtic Park, Glasgow

    George 56


    CELTIC Under-17s lifted the Glasgow Cup for the first time in three years with a dominant 1-0 victory over Rangers in Paradise.

    Paul George capped off a wonderful individual display by scoring the only goal of the game in the second-half with a fine finish after being set up by Darnell Fisher.

    Following the Under-19s’ league and cup triumph, it means the Celtic Academy are now in possession of every major trophy at pro-youth level in Scotland. 

    In front of over 4000 supporters, the young Hoops made a bright start, quickly settling into their passing style on the terrific Celtic Park surface and pinning the visitors back. 

    It didn’t take them long to carve out some decent chances. Lewis Kidd embarked on an enterprising burst down the right and delivered a decent cross into the mix which was headed clear at the near post.

    Irish youth internationalist, George, then made a tremendous burst into the box from the left, evading several challenges, but placed his shot just past the far post.

    Joe Chalmers also tested Blair Currie with an accurate drive from distance before Rangers made their first foray forward when Darren Ramsey sent a shot high and wide from 25 yards. 

    However, Miodrag Krivokapic’s side were soon back on the offensive, with Chalmers having another opportunity to demonstrate his long-shooting ability, after John Herron was shoved over outside the box. But the left-back curled his effort over.

    Some neat link-up play on the right between Michael Miller and John Herron allowed the latter time to cross from the byline. However, Kidd was unable to get the ball under control.

    It was all Celtic, though, and Herron passed up two further opportunities to take the lead. First his acrobatic volley was blocked by a defender, before some effective pressing high up the pitch presented him with a chance to test Currie again from an acute angle.

    Just past the half-hour mark, Rangers created their first clear opening. Mo Yaqub misjudged a long punt up the pitch which left Dyer with only Leonardo Fasan to beat – but the Italian keeper did brilliantly to tip the ball past.

    Having utterly dominated the opening stages, going behind would have been a huge injustice. But the youths rapidly recovered their poise and the ever-dangerous George went on another positive run into the area but fired over.

    A driving foray forward from Herron saw the youngster force Currie into another smart stop. And the pattern continued after the interval with Denny Johnstone evading several challenges and shooting straight at the Rangers shot-stopper.

    It was still one-way traffic. Chalmers, always keen to push forward, delivered a dangerous ball across the six-yard box which had no takers.

    Finally, the young Hoops made the breakthrough their dominance deserved. Darnell Fisher, a dynamic presence in the midfield, displayed great determination and energy to win possession deep in the visitors’ territory, before finding George on the left.

    With only one thought on his mind, the forward hared in on goal and swept the ball in off the far post, sending the Celtic support in the Main Stand into raptures.

    That sparked a short-lived response from the Ibrox side and substitute George Scott should have done better when he failed to control a deep cross.

    In the 62nd minute, the lively Johnstone was forced to leave the fray, clutching his hamstring, and was replaced by Swedish youngster, William Ankarhake.

    But that attacking switch failed to quell the rampant young Celts. George was unfortunate not to double the Hoops’ advantage when his thunderous drive from 25 yards forced Currie into an excellent stop. The keeper also had to be alert to thwart Ankarhake from the rebound.

    The visitors simply couldn’t handle the pace and invention of George. This time he led a swift counter-attack through the middle, threading a pass through to Ankarhake whose low effort from a tight angle was gathered by Currie.

    Frustration was creeping into Rangers’ play with several robust challenges going unpunished by referee, Steven Reid.

    And despite some desperate late attacks from the visitors, the youths held on comfortably for a well-earned triumph. 

    CELTIC (4-4-2) Fusan; Miller, Fraser, O’Brien, Chalmers; Herron (Findlay 89), Fisher, Kidd, Yaqub (Kirwan 90); George, Johnstone (Ankarhake 62)
    Not Used: Wightman, Lindsay, Madden, Mjallby

    RANGERS (4-1-4-1) Currie; Murdoch, Rumsby (Gallagher 67) Wilson, McIntyre; Gafaiti, Ramsey, Fotheringham, Dyer, Clarke (Scott 45); McMahon (Espling 45)
    Not Used: Owens, Wylie, Pascazio, George

    Attendance: 4108

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