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1995-05-13: Dundee Utd 0-1 Celtic, Premier Division
| Match Pictures | Matches: 1994 - 1995 | 1994-1995 Pictures |
- Celtic announced the free travel to Parkhead scheme for season ticket holders which would kick in the next season
- The Reserves scooped the Premier Reserve League title and the Reserve League Cup this week – for the second season in a row. The success was put down to the coaching of Frank Connor and Tom McAdam – and also to a degree to Charlie Nicholas’ presence with the younger members of the Reserve squad.
- Pre-Season dates and tour for the next season were announced.
- The game marked Malky MacKay’s senior team debut
- Dundee United were relegated following this defeat. They had needed a win and for Aberdeen to lose against Falkirk to see the Dons go down in their place. The Dons won 2-0 away to Falkirk and the Arabs lost here.
- Celtic fans sing Vera Lynn's 'We'll meet again some happy day' to United fans in a good natured fashion after their relegation.
- This was Charlie Nicholas' last game for Celtic.
ReviewLast league game of the season and an end-of-term air prevailed principally because it looked like Dundee Utd. were headed for relegation. Celtic’s own 4th position in the league finishing below Rangers, Motherwell and Hibernian was hardly something to sing about though, but at least there was still the Scottish Cup Final to look forward to and hope for success.
O'Hanlon, Perry, Malpas, Dailly, Craig, McInally, Johnston, Hannah, McLaren (Crabbe, 46), Winters, Brewster (Sergio, 66)
Non Used Sub: Garden
Bonner, Boyd, McKinlay, Vata, MacKay, Grant (Gray, 27), McLaughlin (Nicholas, 80), McStay, Van Hooijdonk, O’Donnell, Collins
Non Used Sub: Marshall
Scorer: O’Donnell (75)
Yellows: Van Hooijdonk (Celtic)
Referee: A Waddell (Edinburgh)
- Match Report (see below)
From Celtic View.
Celtic fans were in fine voice as Dundee United tumbled out of the Premier Division.
They turned the final game of the season into a sing song belting out”We’ll meet again” as United plunged out of the top flight for the first time in 35 years.
Despite the win Saturday’s clash also produced sadness for the Celts. Peter Grant was stretchered off in 27 minutes after a tackle from Jim McInally resulting in a knee injury which could rule him out of the Scottish Cup Final.
However there was a bright beginning for Malky MacKay ewho made his senior competitive debut at the centre of defense alongside Tom Boyd.
After a season wrecked by injury – he spent five months out with torn knee ligaments – the final league game gave him something to smile about.
O’Donnell struck in the 75th minute when he robbed David Craig on the edge of the area before planting the ball in the far left corner of the net for his seventh goal of the season.
An immaculate finish, it was a class apart from some of the otherwise untidy efforts of both sides in a game that MacKay, 23, was surprised but delighted to figure in.
He said, “I’ve been dying to get that competitive debut out of the way and now, after 8 Friendlies and two first team trips, I’ve done it.
“This season’s been a write-off for me, but at least it ended in fine style.
“I didn’t expect to be playing before the end of the season but with physio Brian Scott’s help, and that of my friend and Sports Psychologist Tom Lucas, things could not have worked out better.
“I played for the Reserves in their title clincher and in the Reserve League Cup final win and topped these off with my first team competitive debut. But I was surprised when the boss told me that Brian O’Neil had taken a knock and that I would play.
“My contract’s up at the end of the summer so I was determined to show that I could make a contribution at senior level and was pleased with my performance.”
With a clean sheet and a win in his first match Malky could hardly have asked for more in a game that was of far greater significance to United than to Celtic.
However the big defender insisted that didn’t show.
He said, “We had a greater appetite than them
“They went about their business as if they were resigned to the fact that Aberdeen would win at Falkirk and send them in to the First Division regardless of our own result.
“Our fans created a real carnival atmosphere and their renditions of ‘We’ll Meet Again’ were hilarious
“I wouldn’t wish relegation on anyone but I wa too busy thinking about myself and my own team to consider the implications for Dundee United.”
Celtic always looked the more threatening side and after Paul McStay had hacked a Craig Brewster effort off the line in the third minute, they took control. Brian McLaughlin playing in a more forward role with Pierre van Hooijdonk had three chances in the first half – but he still failed to get his first senior strike. Early on he screwed an effort wide than had a weak drive saved by Kelham O’Hanlon, then saw a shot slip past. And in the 69th minute he did everything right only to see the keeper push his shot past the post. But MacKay was in no doubt that McLaughlin would come good on the scoring front. His ability to make good runs and draw defenders has given the opportunity for others to score.
One of those has been Pierre van Hooijdonk who should have burst the net from 8 yards in the 72nd minute – but blasted over.
United were not entirely without their opportunities. Pat Bonner pulled off a marvellous finger tip save from Robbie Winters within seconds of the restart while sub Sergio was unlucky after beating the keeper with a flick only to see the ball rebound off the crossbar in the 73rd minute.
Neither was the game without its controversies. McStay appeared to be hauled down inside the box by David Hannah in the 21st minute only for ref Andrew Waddell to ignore appeals.
The official also failed to take action over the tackle from McInally six minutes later that left Grant writhing.
MacKay pointed out: “Peter was shouting ‘My knee’s gone. Something’s snapped’. I feel so bad for him.”
Christian Dailly was sent off in the final minute after raising his hand to van Hooijdonk, who was also booked in the incident.
- Manager Interview
“Our win was achieved at great cost – Peter looks to have no chance of making the Cup final.
“Our thoughts are with Peter and now we’ll just have to go and win it for him.
“You wonder why when the referee was only five yards away that there was no action taken over the foul.
“Peter’s been our most consistent player all term and I’m hurting for him after this latest blow, following the broken foot which kept him out of the 1988 Scottish Cup final and the ban that ruled hoim out of the Coca-Cola Cup final.”
“I wish Dundee United all the luck in the future. They have a good manager in Billy Kirkwood and I am sure they can bounce right back.
“It is only in looking around Tannadice that you realise what a great job Jim McLean has done in building up the club.”
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