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1997-11-30: Celtic 3-0 Dundee Utd, League Cup Final
|Match Pictures | Matches: 1997- 1998 | 1997-1998 Pictures|
- Celtic won the tournament without losing a goal.
- Wim Jansen's first trophy as manager... Gave him a breather after what was a difficult start to the league season.
- Although he put in some good work to create the goal for Burley, if you still have a video of the match you can watch the much-maligned Regi Blinker in the 27th minute contriving to become one of the few footballers ever to genuinely hit his own backside with a shot. A cross comes over from the right and Blinker attempts to volley it into the net with his right foot but hits it directly downward. As his momentum carries him forward the ball comes up and hits him on the backside.
ReviewCeltic won the league cup comfortably against Dundee Utd and set themselves up for the rest of one of the most important seasons in the history of the club. The first of Wim Jansens two trophies in his single season as manager had a major effect on the club.
It was only Celtic's second trophy of the 1990s and the victory began to make the supporters believe that rangers move toward 10-in-a-row could be stopped.
The final was played at Ibrox (due to the reconstruction of Hampden).
A twenty-first minute header from Marc Rieper put Celtic ahead and they never looked in danger from then on. Henrik Larsson, looking sharp and beginning to show the form that made him a legend, intercepted a pass and his 20 yard shot was deflected over the goalkeeper putting Celtic 2-0 up in the 24th minute and the game was effectively over.
Craig Burley scored in the second-half with a header after Regi Blinker had gone around two defenders and put in an excellent cross and the fans began to celebrate.
Morten Wieghorst put it an excellent performance, getting the assist for the first goal and winning the man of the match.
Whilst the fans enjoyed having a trophy to celebrate in the midst of such a barren spell, Henrik Larsson outlined what was the main concern of this season, as every other, winning the league.
"Everybody is so happy. The supporters have been waiting for this for a long time. We hope we'll feel the benefit of this win in the championship. We've got a lot to do but we will do well if we keep on playing like this."
Having previously lost 4 matches in the 97-98 premier league season, after this final they only lost one more (against rangers at Ibrox).
Gould, Boyd, Mahe, McNamara (Annoni 90), Rieper, Stubbs, Larsson, Burley, Thom (Donnelly 80), Wieghorst, Blinker (Lambert 88).
Goals: Rieper 21, Larsson 24, Burley 59 .
Dykstra, Skoldmark (McSwegan 57), Malpas, Pressley, Perry, Pedersen, Olofsson, Zetterlund, Winters, Easton, Bowman.
Substitutes: Dolan, Andersson.
Booked: Easton, McSwegan.
Ref: J McCluskey (Stewarton).
Celtic head coach Wim Jansen confirmed the rapid impact he has made at Parkhead by guiding his side to sparkling Coca-Cola Cup glory as Dundee United were overwhelmed at Ibrox. Success has been foreign for Celtic for so long, so it is only apt a continental coach should come in and transform them aided today by goals from a Dane, a Swede and, just for tradition's sake, a Scot. Two goals in three first-half minutes gave Celtic an initiative they never looked like relinquishing in a final which proved surprisingly one-sided.
Marc Rieper's towering header and Henrik Larsson's shot from distance gave the Bhoys a vital first-half platform. United pressed hard after the restart but the game was effectively ended as a contest after 59 minutes when Craig Burley headed in from close range.
Larsson found time and space on the right but short of options switched play to the left where Regi Blinker forced his way to the byline before finding an unmarked Burley to head home from close range. Andreas Thom had a simple chance of a fourth goal with 10 minutes remaining after bursting clear of a tiring United rearguard, but put his shot wide. The trophy is only Celtic's second this decade, but they achieved it in convincing fashion by going through the whole tournament without conceding a goal.
The 1995 Scottish Cup win against Airdrie was a scrappy, almost apologetic success, but Celtic turned on the style against a disappointing United. To put Jansen's day into perspective, it is the first occasion Celtic have won the Scottish League Cup since 1982 when they defeated Rangers - they have lost four finals since then. But today, like Celtic under their enigmatic Dutchman, was very different and a composed team performance well-merited the resounding scoreline. Rieper passed a late fitness test on a calf strain but Paul Lambert's hamstring problem restricted him to the bench, allowing Morten Wieghorst to play. After scoring twice in the 4-0 league win against the same opponents eight days ago, Thom retained his place ahead of Simon Donnelly. For United, Robbie Winters, David Bowman and Magnus Skoldmark were all introduced into the team which lost at Parkhead, Gary McSwegan and Jamie Dolan demoted to substitutes.
Wieghorst offered the first threat at goal after four minutes, shooting straight at Sieb Dykstra after a Blinker cross was played into his path by Larsson. Rieper opened the scoring after 21 minutes with a powerful header in off the post from man-of-the-match Wieghorst's drilled cross from the right. Celtic doubled their advantage three minutes later when Mark Perry surrendered possession to Larsson inside his own half. Perry paid for his loose pass as the Swede ran directly at the United backline, his shot deflecting past Dykstra via the outstretched boot of Maurice Malpas.
Celtic were buoyant and United at once launched a flurry of attacks in a desperate attempt to revive the situation. Most of these were fuelled by the drive of Kjell Olofsson, who went closest to scoring a reply from a 31st-minute free-kick which went just wide with Jonathan Gould seemingly beaten. Celtic might have made it three in their next attack, the out-of-form Blinker failing to connect with his shot when well-placed in the area.
And as Jansen's team regained the initiative they almost went into the interval 3-0 ahead when Thom's header drifted just over following Jackie McNamara's precise cross. Olofsson unleashed another fierce free-kick after 47 minutes which fizzed just past the upright as United outlined their second-half intentions.
But they were never able to put theory into practice as Celtic upped a gear decisively. First a superb driving run from Wieghorst, one of many made by the Dane, put Thom clear only for the German's poor first touch to allow Dykstra to gather. Encouraged at gaps appearing in the United backline, Celtic probed again and this time Larsson and Blinker combined for Burley to nod in from close range.
Teams Celtic: Gould, Boyd, Mahe, McNamara (Annoni 90), Rieper, Stubbs, Larsson, Burley, Thom (Donnelly 80), Wieghorst, Blinker (Lambert 88). Goals: Rieper 21, Larsson 24, Burley 59.
Dundee Utd: Dykstra, Skoldmark (McSwegan 57), Malpas, Pressley, Perry, Pedersen, Olofsson, Zetterlund, Winters, Easton, Bowman. Subs Not Used: Dolan, Andersson. Booked: Easton, McSwegan.
Ref: J McCluskey (Stewarton).
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