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  • Guidetti strike seals the points for Hoops

    Guidetti strike seals the points for Hoops

    By: Martin Dalziel on 01 Nov, 2014 17:02

  • SPFL Premiership
    Celtic Park, Glasgow
    Saturday, November 1, 2014

    CELTIC...1
    (Guidetti 48)

    INVERNESS...0

    A JOHN Guidetti goal gave Celtic a vital win over Inverness Caley Thistle today (Saturday), as Lukasz Zaluska produced a couple of vital late saves to ensure the Hoops gathered all three points.

    The Bhoys controlled the game and took the lead early in the second-half thanks to another piece of brilliance from Guidetti, who duped the Inverness defence with a series of step-overs before finishing low to Dean Brill’s left from inside the box.

    And while the visitors had a couple of late chances, it was a well-deserved victory for Ronny Deila's side.

    Celtic were comfortable in possession from the start and spread the play well as they searched for an opening. Mikael Lustig and Emilio Izaguirre both found space down the flanks as the Hoops stretched Caley Thistle in the wide areas, but their initial crosses were dealt with by the visitors.

    John Guidetti went close to making it nine goals in as many games when he got on the end of an early Stefan Johansen cross after a quick corner, but he fired his effort marginally over from close-range.

    Mubarak Wakaso then had a chance shortly afterwards following further good play from Johansen in the Inverness box but his curling shot from the right was deflected wide for a corner.

    The subsequent set-piece was cleared but Celtic kept the visitors camped on their own 18-yard line with their high pressing game.

    Chances were limited for John Hughes’ side but Virgil van Dijk was forced to clear from under the Celtic crossbar for an Inverness corner as the visitors probed the Celtic box with searching crosses, but their spell of pressure was short-lived as Scott Brown cleared the danger and got the Bhoys back on the attack.

    The Celtic captain then went close with a shot from distance as the Hoops turned the screw, as did Anthony Stokes, but Brill remained relatively untested with the efforts.

    The Hoops continued to search for the opener as the half wore on and reverted back to their early approach by searching for penetration down the flanks, but the first goal remained elusive as the referee blew for the break.

    Inverness started the second-half with a brief spell of possession but Guidetti put paid to their hopes when he fired the Hoops into the lead with a clever piece of skill and an accurate finish in the box.

    The goal came from an attack up the pitch from Anthony Stokes, who played in Guidetti in the Inverness box. The Swede dropped his shoulder and produced two step-overs to create space before firing home low past Brill.

    Guidetti was involved again seconds later when he collected a pass in the box before being challenged in the area. The Swede went down but no penalty was given although Ross Draper was booked in the aftermath for what appeared to be a stamp on the Celtic striker.

    The Hoops were in full flow by this point and could have had a second when Guidetti set up Wakaso with good hold-up play in the edge of the penalty area but the Ghanaian’s left-footed shot sailed over.

    The game had certainly heated up following the goal and the referee was forced to issue a further two yellow cards, one for Wakaso and one for Carl Tremarco, as a few late challenges came in.

    Celtic continued to have all the possession but, similarly to the first-half, Inverness were still dangerous on the break. Van Dijk did well to close down Watkins in the box when a low cross came in from the left before Shinnie threatened with a shot from distance but the Hoops survived unscathed.

    Wakaso could have killed the game for the Hoops but he was closed down by the Inverness defence in the box and his shot went out for a corner. Johansen swung the set-piece in and it was met by Mulgrew and then van Dijk before falling to Denayer, but his shot blazed over.

    Substitutes Callum McGregor and Adam Matthews linked well down the right after coming on and their play breathed new life into the Celtic attack but the second goal still eluded the Bhoys.

    Inverness also made a double switch as Ryan Christie and Billy McKay replaced James Vincent and Danny Williams which gave them a different edge in attack as they pushed for an equaliser.

    Tremarco could have equalised with a header from a Greg Tansey corner and Billy McKay looked to have done just that but Zaluska somehow stretched to make the crucial save and seal the victory for the Hoops.

    CELTIC (4-2-3-1) Zaluska; Lustig (Matthews 62), Denayer, van Dijk, Izaguirre; Brown, Mulgrew; Wakaso (McGregor 69), Johansen, Stokes; Guidetti.
    Subs: Fasan, Ambrose, Scepovic, Griffiths, Kayal,.

    INVERNESS (4-5-1) Brill; Raven, Warren, Meekings, Shinnie; Tansey, Draper (Doran 81), Vincent (McKay 69), Williams (Christie 69), Tremarco;.Watkins
    Not used: Esson, Ross, Devine, Polworth,

    Website man of the match: John Guidetti

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