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  • Edouard on target as Celts cruise to victory in Armenia

    Edouard on target as Celts cruise to victory in Armenia

    By: Newsroom Staff on 10 Jul, 2018 19:08

  • UEFA Champions League
    First Qualifying Round, First Leg
    Republican Stadium, Yerevan, Armenia
    Tuesday, July 10, 2018

    ALASHKERT… 0

    CELTIC … 3
    (Edouard 45+2, Forrest 81, McGregor 90)

    CELTIC kicked off their UEFA Champions League qualification campaign with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Alashkert at the Republican Stadium in the Armenian capital, Yerevan. Goals from Odsonne Edouard, James Forrest and Callum McGregor gave the Hoops the win and puts them in a commanding position to progress to the next round.

    In the searing Armenian heat, the Hoops started on the front foot, with McGregor having the first chance, though his shot was saved by the Alashkert goalkeeper. And the ever-impressive Kieran Tierney was causing the home side problems down the right flank

    Alashkert slowly began to work their way into the contest, and there were a couple of scares for the Celtic defence after 20 minutes when, first, Artak Dashyan’s effort was parried away by Craig Gordon, before a curling effort went wide of the post.

    James Forrest fired a powerful shot just narrowly off target on the half-hour as the Hoops continued to go in search of an away goal, while both sets of players welcomed the stop in action for a water break. Then, after Alashkert tested Celtic on the counter-attack in the 38th minute, McGregor at the other end came close with a low drive.

    Moussa Dembele’s chipped effort was blocked by the home keeper with a minute of the half remaining before his strike partner gave Celtic the lead in first-half added time. With the ball bobbing about in the box, Forrest’s effort was blocked but spun into the path of Odsonne Edouard, who coolly slotted the ball home with a first-time volley.

    Brendan Rodgers’ side remained in control of proceedings throughout much of the second-half, restricting Alashkert to a number of ambitious long-range efforts which didn’t trouble Craig Gordon.

    And with nine minutes of the match, Celtic doubled their lead. A corner was delivered to the far post, where Scott Sinclair managed to slide the ball back to Jack Hendry. He knocked it towards the six-yard box, and though his pass was blocked, it fell to James Forrest 10 yards out, and his precise right-footed shot landed in the back of the net.

    The Hoops continued to go in search of more goals, and they got their reward in the last minute of the game. Forrest was the provider this time with some excellent play on the edge of the box, and when he slipped the ball to Callum McGregor, the midfielder fired home a low shot to give the Hoops a 3-0 first leg win.

    CELTIC: Gordon; Hendry, Ajer, Simunovic; Brown; Forrest, McGregor, Ntcham (Kouassi 67), Tierney; Dembele (Sinclair 67), Edouard (Morgan 77).
    Subs: Bain, Christie, Allan, Ralston.

    ALASHKERT: Cancarevic, Yedigaryan, Voskanyan, Praznovsky, Daghbashyan, Grigoryan, Dashya, Yedigaryan, Sekulic, Nenadovic.
    Subs: Avagyan, Zeljkovic, Stojkovic, Antonic, Manasyan, Simonyan, Romero

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