Hoops bounce back with Well victory

Josh Thompson netted a brace as Celtic beat Motherwell 2-1 at Parkhead to bounce back from their shock Scottish Cup defeat to Ross County.

Last Updated: 13/04/10 at 22:28 Post Comment

Thompson (right): Celebrates one of his goals with O'Dea

Thompson (right): Celebrates one of his goals with O'Dea

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Teenage defender Thompson converted from two corners after his mistake led to Mark Reynolds putting the visitors in front just after the halfway mark in the Scottish Premier League clash.

Celtic also had goalkeeper Lukasz Zaluska to thank as they moved eight points ahead of Dundee United in their quest to secure a Champions League qualifying spot.

Zaluska saved from Lukas Jutkiewicz as Motherwell carved out the best chance of the first half and, although Celtic eventually pushed their visitors back after the opener, the Pole made further important stops.

Celtic interim manager Neil Lennon made three changes following the Scottish Cup semi-final defeat with Georgios Samaras and Andreas Hinkel dropping out of the squad altogether with Marc-Antoine Fortune demoted to the bench. Mark Wilson, Niall McGinn and the fit-again Diomansy Kamara replaced them.

Celtic Park looked less than half full and, although the home players were afforded a good reception, there was a low-key atmosphere as Celtic enjoyed the bulk of possession without threatening until the 10th minute.

McGinn charged down Stevie Hammell's clearance and crossed for Robbie Keane, but the ball was marginally behind the Irishman and he could not direct his header towards goal.

Motherwell lost Keith Lasley to injury a minute later with Giles Coke coming on, but they enjoyed a decent attacking spell which culminated in Steve Jennings having a shot blocked from 20 yards.

Aiden McGeady saw an enterprising run foiled by Michael Fraser at the goalkeeper's near post but the visitors were enjoying their fair share of possession and came close in the 28th minute after Jutkiewicz had collected a long ball and turned Darren O'Dea.

The on-loan Everton striker fed Jamie Murphy, whose shot from the edge of the box was spilled by Zaluska, but Scott Brown scrambled the ball clear as Jutkiewicz tried to turn home the rebound.

Motherwell created an even better chance in the 33rd minute when Murphy showed good skill before releasing Jutkiewicz in the right channel, but Zaluska came out to block the striker's low shot from 15 yards.

Celtic broke moments later but Keane dragged a difficult chance wide of the far post after McGinn's pass and Fraser comfortably held McGeady's long-range effort.

Motherwell took the lead three minutes after the restart when Thompson could only divert Tom Hateley's free-kick into the path of Reynolds, who finished from six yards.

Thompson took just two minutes to atone though when he turned the ball into Fraser's bottom corner from 12 yards after Brown had headed down McGinn's corner.

Celtic looked to have been stung into action and McGeady shot just over from the edge of a crowded penalty box.

Motherwell almost shot themselves in the foot on the hour mark when Jim O'Brien lost the ball after Hateley's short corner, allowing McGeady to break and send a diagonal ball into the path of Keane, but Fraser blocked his shot from 15 yards.

Celtic kept the pressure on and Fraser punched the ball into the path of Kamara 16 yards out but Steven Saunders, on moments earlier for Stephen Craigan, blocked the Fulham player's shot in the six-yard box.

Motherwell were still dangerous when they got forward and Zaluska made another good save in the 75th minute when he blocked John Sutton's header following O'Brien's deep cross.

Celtic moved ahead in the 78th minute when Lee Naylor curled a corner into the six-yard box and Thompson headed powerfully home.

Keane was not far away with a well-executed volley from 25 yards before Jutkiewicz limped off and Chris Humphrey came on.

Zaluska had more work to do to ensure the three points, which mean Rangers cannot clinch the title at Tannadice tomorrow night, by rushing off his line to block from Murphy following Sutton's header-on.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Sunday, 23 November 2014
12:45
Partick 0-1 Aberdeen  
Saturday, 22 November 2014
15:00
Celtic 2-1 Dundee  
Dundee U 3-1 Kilmarnock  
Hamilton 3-0 St Mirren  
Inverness 3-1 Motherwell  
St J'stone 2-1 Ross Co  
Sunday, 09 November 2014
12:30
Aberdeen 1-2 Celtic Report
Saturday, 08 November 2014
15:00
Dundee 1-1 St J'stone Report
Inverness 4-2 Hamilton  
Kilmarnock 0-3 Ross Co  

Footer 365

International football: England up seven places in latest FIFA rankings

England have jumped seven places to 13th place in the latest FIFA rankings following a six-match winning run.

Champions League: Carlo Ancelotti backs Basle against Liverpool

Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti expects Basle to avoid defeat against Liverpool and join them in the second round.

Champions League: Brendan Rodgers hails 'character' of Liverpool after draw at Ludogorets

Brendan Rodgers hailed the character of his Liverpool team after their 2-2 draw away to Ludogorets in the Champions League.

Mail Box

Makes Sense To Make Gerrard Liverpool Manager

That's the thoughts of one Mailboxer, who wants Jamie Carragher as defensive coach. Plus views on Arsenal, Malmo v Juventus, Alexis Sanchez & tremendous improvement...

Mails: Quit Massaging Mourinho's Ego

That's the message from the afternoon mailbox after it was claimed that the Chelsea boss has transformed Cesc Fabregas into a complete player. Plus, more on Arsenal...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property