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  • Hoops Lose to St Pauli in Tough Workout

    Hoops Lose to St Pauli in Tough Workout

    By: Martin Dalziel on 26 Jul, 2014 16:03

  • Pre-season friendly

    Millerntor Stadium, Hamburg

    Saturday, July 26, 2014

     

    FC St. Pauli...1

    Nothe 38

    Celtic...0

     

    A young Celtic side lost 1-0 to St Pauli in a tough work out today in the Hamburg sunshine.

    Ronny Deila named a staring XI which featured a number of U20 and development squad players as the first team prepares for Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League third round qualifier against Legia Warsaw on Wednesday.

    The young Hoops side were undone by good work from Schachten and Nothe on 38mins with the latter scoring low past Gordon but recovered well to carve out their own chances in the game.

    The match kicked off with friendship in the stands but a decent level of intensity on the pitch.

    The Hoops struggled to maintain possession early on but still looked the most threatening and tested Tschauner in the St Pauli goal with a low shot from Atajic to the keeper’s right early on.

    Balde had a fantastic opportunity only minutes later when the ball fell kindly for him on the edge of the box. He dribbled on into the area but the on-rushing Tschauner closed the angle for the striker and smothered the shot.

    St Pauli remained composed throughout the early stages and looked most dangerous from set pieces. An early corner on the 10 minute mark flashed across goal but was eventually cleared by Balde, who took a knock for his trouble.

    The German side probed the Celtic right-flank with a number of through balls to Bahn leaving the Hoops’ defence exposed but good covering from Twardzik in the left-back position dispelled the danger.

    The first 20mins of the game were played largely in midfield as Celtic looked to build from the back and play through the centre of the pitch.

    McGeouch, Bitton and Henderson all interchanged in a bid to find the key to unlock the St Pauli defence but it was good work from the industrious Watt down the Celtic left that looked most likely to break the deadlock.

    Nir Bitton lashed a shot over from the edge of the box but Celtic were tested at the back again when a long throw in fell to Kalla on the edge of the Celtic area but his volley went well wide.

    A succession of corners for St Pauli put Celtic under pressure but a clash of heads involving McGeouch and Buchtmann soon led to a break in play followed by a water break.

    Celtic were soon behind shortly after when Schachten capitalised on a Twardzik slip in the left back area and dispatched a pass to Nothe, who scored with a well-placed shot past Gordon on 38mins with his right foot.

    The goal came against the run of play as Celtic had been building well but had looked unsure at the back when St Pauli attacked.

    The Hoops tried to get back in to the match immediately and looked to Watt upfront for inspiration. The Scotland under 21 internationalist used his pace to beat Schachten on a number of occasions but his final pass was always cleared by the St Pauli defence.

    Celtic headed to the dressing room at half time looking to re-emerge with a revamped game plan.

    The teams returned for the second half with a slightly changed Celtic side after Zaluska replaced Gordon in goal and Paul McMullen came on for Balde up front.

    The Hoops showed more endeavour to retain the ball instantly, with the midfielders and full backs combining to win back possession anytime the ball was lost.

    St Pauli won a corner early in the second half with substitute Maier playing the ball in to the front post, only for it to be cleared for another corner.

    The ball was played in again to the front post but Celtic gathered and broke well through Watt down the left flank but his run across the 18-yard-line was halted well by the St Pauli defence.

    Atajic had a chance to pull the trigger for Celtic shortly after when a good cross from Twardzik found the Bosnian in the St Pauli box but he tried to control the ball rather than shoot first time.

    The St Pauli goal scorer, Nothe, then squandered a great chance to grab his second of the day with a volley in front of Zaluska but his shot sailed harmlessly over.

    A series of fouls from St Pauli were then followed by a number of substitutions by the home side on 65mins. Trybull, Nehrig and Daube all came on for Buchtmann, Schachten and Nothe.

    Celtic pushed Watt into the central position up front and he soon tested Tschauner with a stinging shot from the right. A good through ball from the Celtic midfield unleashed Watt, who bent his run well but was frustrated to see his shot saved.

    The resulting corner was cleared and St Pauli began to press again with Celtic put under pressure with another succession of St Pauli corners and set pieces.

    The home side made another substitution with Ziereis replacing Kalla. Maier then pulled out a great save from Zaluska with a long-range free kick which dipped as it approached the Polish goalkeeper.

    St Pauli should have made it 2-0 minutes later when substitute Daube did well to beat Findlay on the edge of the box but his low shot went inches wide of the near post on 80mins.

    Celtic tried to get back into the fixture and had the perfect chance to do so on 86minutes with a penalty.

    Youngster McMullan did well to weave his way into the box and was brought down by a lunging tackle from Trybull.

    Watt grabbed the ball but the chance was given to Atajic. The Bosnian took a staggered run up but Tschauner stayed still in the St Pauli goal and Atajic’s shot went over the bar.

    The game drew to a conclusion with a resounding chorus of You’ll Never Walk Alone and both fans in good voice but Celtic will look back on a number of missed chances as they head into Wednesday’s game in Poland.

     

    Website man of the match: McGeouch.

    CELTIC (4-2-3-1) Gordon, (Zaluska) Herron, O’Connell, Findlay, Twardzik, Henderson, Bitton, McGeouch, Atajic, Balde (McMullan), Watt.

    Subs: Waters, McManus, Irvine, Fraser, Lindsay

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