Champions League Recap And Analysis: Celtic Shocks Barcelona

 @footy_views
on November 08 2012 9:43 AM

An amazing night in Glasgow that saw Celtic snatch a 2-1 win showed Scottish football to be not all bad and  showed up  Barca's problems under Tito Vilanova.

Celtic's two goals from Victor Wanyama and Tony Watt were a great example of how Barca's defensive has been struggling. From a corner Celtic took the lead, the marking on Wanyama came as non-existent and the Kenyan capitalised on the error. Late in the second half, Parkhead again erupted as a long punt by Forster was met by Tony Watt who slipped it past Valdes. Barcelona's defence got nowhere near either of the goalscorers during the two goals and even when Pique came on to sure up the backline, Tony Watt still managed to score. Perhaps pressure creeping in on Tito Vilanova with his Barca team seeming a very average outfit compared to that of his predecessor, Pep Guardiola.

Frazer Forster again deserved to take the plaudits for his contribution, the Newcastle born goalkeeper kept Celtic in the game for the mostpart, thwarting Messi on multiple occasions. His recent perfomances should again warrant him another England cap, seemingly going nowhere at Newcastle, he's turned into a keeper that could possibly rival Hart to England's number one shirt. He was unlucky not to get an cleansheet and possibly the footballing gods have something to answer for, but there was no denying Lionel Messi. 

What made the victory even more sweet was the simplicity of Celtic's game plan. Stop Barcelona playing and they did effectively, Messi the 'constant threat' just could never get into his full flow. Xavi and Iniesta were limited to operating to a constricted area of the midfield and Alexis Sanchez and Pedro were kept at bay on the wings. While Barcelona did dominate for the most part, Celtic did attempt to play some football, as Miku and Samaras tried to cause danger. It was stopped throughout but with Celtic not always restraining to be a 'brick wall' they ended up with a win.

In additon to this great achievement, getting to knockout stages is certainly in Celtic's reach now. The Champions League run thus far is the best times they've had for five or six years. Celtic park certainly isn't an easy place to go for visiting European teams and Celtic's resilience makes them a threat both home and away.  

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