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Glasgow Celtic   2   Tottenham Hotspur    0      (Half-time score : 2-0)

Wembley Cup
Venue : -  Wembley
Sunday 26th July 2009
Kick Off :  3.00 p.m.
Crowd :   ,
Referee :  Alan Wiley (Burntwood)
Spurs kicked off and played towards the West end in the first half.
Weather :  -  Dry, warm
Teams : - 
Glasgow Celtic :

Zaluska

Caddis
Loovens (Caldwell 46)
O'Dea (c)
Fox (Conroy 46)

Flood
McCourt (McGowan 66)
Crosas
Mizuno (Ferry 66)

Killen 
Samaras  (McGinn 66)

Unused subs: 
Boruc
Hinkel
Naylor
N'Guemo
MacDonald
Fortun'e
Maloney
Donati
McGeady

Tottenham Hotspur :

Gomes (Cudicini 46)

Hutton (Naughton 46)
Dervite (Corluka 46)
Chimbonda
Assou-Ekotto (Rose 46)

O'Hara (Obika 82)
Palacios (Livermore 46)
Huddlestone (Bostock 75)
Lennon (Modric 46)

Keane (c)  (Defoe 46)
Bent (Pavyluchenko 46)
 

Unused subs: 
-
 

Colours : -  (kits courtesy of http://www.colours-of-football.com)
Glasgow Celtic

 

Tottenham Hotspur
Scorers : -  
Glasgow Celtic

Killen 9
Samaras 40

Tottenham Hotspur

None

Cards : -  
Glasgow Celtic

       

    

Tottenham Hotspur 

       

     

Match Report : -  
After battling back for a point on Friday, two sloppy bits of defending left Spurs 0-2 losers to Glasgow Celtic in the final game of the inaugural Wembley this afternoon.  It wasn't all one way though, with Tottenham creating enough chances to get back in the match, but they could not stick the ball in the net.

With Tottenham having the majority of the possession, it was the massed ranks of the green hooped shirts and the poor finishing that ended Tottenham's impressive five-year run of undefeated pre-season friendlies, but perhaps this will sharpen the focus of the team and serve to remind them that there is a need to battle, even when against the odds.

Owing to the defensive injuries, Pascal Chimbonda started in the centre of the defence with Dorian Dervite.  Robbie Keane and Darren bent began the game up front with rumours circulating that a 10 million deal with Portsmouth for Peter Crouch had been agreed and this might have been on Bent's mind, as he had some decent opportunities, but could not net them.

A number of times, Spurs moved the ball well to get in and around the box, but too often an extra pass or touch ended the move, with nobody willing to take a shot on goal.  Lennon skinned new Celtic signing Fox with a cheeky nutmeg, but the ball in failed to be turned into a shot on goal.  Then before you knew it the Scots had scored in the ninth minute.

A seemingly innocuous move down the right was ended in a cross from Caddis being headed in by Chris Killen unimpeded, despite Dervite and Chimbonda both being close to the striker, but not close enough.  Killen has found it easy to find the gap between the two central defenders, but from Tottenham's point of view, it was a poor goal to concede.

It could have been 1-1 four minutes later, as Tom Huddlestone was pressing on the edge of the Celtic box and nicked the ball off Crosas and Keane prodded it through into Bent's path, but one-on-one with the keeper, he put it low to Zaluska's right and he got a leg in the away to keep the ball out.

Spurs needed to be alert, as the movement by the Celtic players was good and there was a lack of covering back, thus allowing the Buoys to move into the area and cause problems.  Mizuno had a low shot that Gomes saw go just wide, before Tottenham created another opening for Bent in the 20th minute, but he failed to get sufficient power behind a header on Palacios' cross.  The striker also missed with his next effort in the next minute, as he swung a boot at BAE's left wing cross to send the ball soaring into the Spurs fans behind the goal.

Spurs were being opened up and the ball was moved out to the left flank, where Fox went forward and played in Mizuno in the penalty area, but he took a touch too many and Chimbonda got back to take the ball off his toe.  Outside of him, Alan Hutton was getting all sorts of stick from the Celtic fans and the Tottenham fans were initially responsive, but as the game went on got quieter.

On the half hour, Assou-Ekotto played the ball to Hud and while he was some 25 yards out, he struck a low shot early, thus catching out Zaluska, who could only fumble his shot as he dived and the luck was not on Tottenham's side, as the ball fell to a green and white shirt and it was hacked clear.  The keeper was also hesitant in coming for a Huddlestone cross, which should have been a routine take, but he let it bounce in front of him, with nobody else around and grabbed it at the second attempt.

Not that it mattered, as five minutes before the break, it was 2-0.  Georgios Samaras picked up the ball five yards inside his own half and Dervite missed a tackle on him on the halfway line.  That should not have mattered, but without possessing the greatest pace, the Greek striker ran away from Dervite, Huddlestone and Chimbonda to take the ball into the penalty area on the right hand side and fire a fierce effort across Gomes to double the lead.  It was a very poor goal to give away and left a hill to climb in this pre-season match.

Admittedly Celtic are ready for their campaign to begin, with Dynamo Moscow waiting for them in the Champions League next week, but Tottenham had looked comfortable for long periods in the first three games of the build-up and against Barcelona came strong at the end.  When Samaras took on a few Spurs players and then Killen picked up the ball as Alan Wiley waved play on, it was only his poor finishing in shooting across the goal, that prevented it being 0-3 at the break. 

There were wholesale changes in the Spurs side at the break and Celtic made four substitutions, probably reaping the benefits of their changes soon after the break, when McCourt was released to run thirty five yards through the Tottenham midfield and back line, before shooting wide of Cudcini's far post.  If it had gone in, it might have eclipsed Ricky Villa's effort, but that was not in a pre-season tournament, but when playing for more serious silverware.

Spurs started to string their passes together and threaten the Celtic goal.  Jake Livermore tried to add another goal to his Wembley collection, but his shot from 25 yards was straight at the goalie, while a better chance was created by O'Hara's left wing cross that the keeper beat Jermain Defoe to and when the loose ball ran to Luka Modric, John O'Dea was on the line to block the effort from going in and O'Hara followed into blaze the ball way over.  Defoe was then the provider in the 53rd minute, setting up Livermore to shoot at Zaluska again.

A slack piece of lack of concentration allowed Crosas to pick out McGinn's run and his drive from outside the box dipped just over Carlo Cudicini's bar and then Conroy made a run on the right wing and Spurs allowed him to cross for Killen to head at goal, but he picked out Cudicini for a comfortable save. 

John Bostock came on for Tom and he made an immediate impact, although some of his passes carried a little too much weight and caused his team-mates problems in trying to control them.  However, he did burst down the left into the corner of the penalty area and pulled a very good ball back across the six yard box, only for Defoe to be slightly behind the ball and then a chance arose a couple of minutes later, when Chimbonda headed a corner into the goal-mouth, but Defoe was once more unable to make contact.  Pavyluchenko almost put Defoe through, but the keeper got there first and then Bostock played a give and go with Livermore, but could not control his shot enough to get it on target and it was still rising as it went over the crossbar.

And that was that.  A new competition finished and with Barcelona beating Al Ahly 4-1, Celtic took the trophy with four points, Barca had three, Tottenham one and Al Ahly none.

It was a disappointing performance and one in which a number of players probably proved to Redknapp that they will not be ready to play in the side for the first game of the season, but there is still time to get them ready, with four more games left against West Ham United, Hull City or a Chinese side, then South China and finally Olympiakos.  Not a lot of playing time or against the best of opposition, but the travelling will also take its toll, so the need to sharpen up for the opener is primary in Harry's mind, I am sure.  After all we don't want to have only two points after eight games again, do we ?

THE FUNKY PHANTOM

 

 

Other score :
Barcelona 4 Al Ahly 1 Sunday

   

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