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2000-04-05: Celtic 4-0 Motherwell, Premier League
|Match Pictures | Matches: 1999 - 2000 | 1999-2000 Pictures|
- Berkovic came under the spotlight for ‘gesturing’ to the fans after he scored in the previous game. He said it was nothing and it was just something he did and he was perfectly happy with the club and the supporters. Dalglish reinforced what he had said before about the necessity of finding a place for him in the team.
- Alan Stubbs underwent a knee operation for a torn cartilage.
- Barry Elliot left Celtic to join Dundee in a free transfer. He would have been out of contract at the end of the season.
- The external pre-match Press Conferences continued with this one also held at the CSA premises in London Rd.
- McNamara (?), Wieghorst (knee) and Viduka (hamstring) were back from injury. Healy, Riseth (‘flu) and Tebily (international) were out and de Ornelas dropped out.
- John Kennedy made his debut and became the youngest ever Celt at 16 years and 231 days clipping 59 days off the previous record held by Roy Aitken.
ReviewLow, but dedicated crowd not that surprising given the league position and mid week evening game. Decent atmosphere and a 4 goal win.
TeamsCeltic: Gould, McNamara, Crainey, Mjallby, Wieghorst, Petrov, Lambert , Berkovic (Moravcik 80), Blinker, Viduka (Burchill 80), Johnson (Kennedy 85).
Subs Not Used: Kerr, Petta.
Goals: Johnson 9, Berkovic 32, Johnson 75, Blinker 76.
Motherwell: Woods, McMillan, Brannan, McCulloch, Goodman (Nevin 35), J. Davies, Twaddle, Kemble, Corrigan, Curcic (Nicholas 66), Strong (McGowan 25).
Subs Not Used: Brown, Adams.
Booked: McMillan, McGowan (Motherwell)
Referee: S Dougal (Scotland).
- Match Report
Celtic salute BerkovicThe Scotsman 06/04/2000
Celtic 4 Johnson (9, 75), Berkovic (32), Blinker (76)
CELTIC scored four goals for the second time in four days at Parkhead last night, with Tommy Johnson and Eyal Berkovic again orchestrating a flowing attacking display which damaged Motherwell's European ambitions.
The English striker scored goals in each half, but the enigmatic Israeli stole the show with another performance and goal celebration which marked him out as an unusual talent.
Following the furore surrounding his provocative use of the arm after his goal against Kilmarnock on Sunday, Scottish football's most expensive talent teasingly threatened to repeat his action after scoring his team's second goal after 32 minutes. The Celtic crowd lapped it up and applauded his every stylish move of a match which was long over before Regi Blinker scored a crowning fourth goal with 14 minutes remaining.
Although the win meant little more than pride to Celtic as Rangers' lead at the top of the SPL remains at 13 points, Motherwell failed to capitalise on their game in hand on third-placed Hearts and must now rely on the Edinburgh team to drop points to assure a UEFA Cup place for next season. The emphasis was on attack from the start and, in the first minute, Blinker forced Stevie Woods into a double save. Berkovic had also fired an effort wide before there was 90 seconds on the clock.
Celtic reaped the benefit of their whirlwind start after nine minutes when Berkovic was fouled 22 yards out by John Davies. Mark Viduka and Johnson stood in discussion over the options before the Englishman stepped forward to slap a left-footed drive past the motionless Woods.
This early damage was the price of the gamble that Billy Davies had played in selecting an adventurous formation, playing three at the back and asking his four midfielders to clamp down man-for-man on their Celtic counterparts, with Ged Brannan given the thankless task of shadowing Berkovic.
Berkovic was at the centre of everything in the win over Kilmarnock, including his controversial goal celebration, but his reception while taking a corner in the same area of the ground showed the Celtic supporters' appreciation of his talents. He responded by acknowledging the applause before floating in a kick which Viduka headed against the bar.
Celtic's second goal came about in unusual circumstances. With Don Goodman collapsed on the turf, Motherwell doctor Robert Liddle rushed on to the pitch with play still in progress. With the visitors clearly distracted, Celtic continued to play to the whistle and Johnson crossed from the left. Although Viduka miscontrolled, Berkovic was able to chest the ball past the advancing Woods to score before commencing the more exacting task of another bizarre celebration. Motherwell protests to referee Jim McCluskey went unheeded.
With Pat Nevin on for Goodman, Sasa Curcic was guilty of missing another gilt-edged chance before the interval when he sent his shot sky high after Jonathan Gould had fumbled a Stephen McMillan cross.
Viduka missed an undefended goal after confusion between Benito Kemble and his goalkeeper after 61 minutes, but further misery was only delayed. With 15 minutes remaining, a weak back-header from the Dutch defender was easily intercepted by Johnson, who casually lobbed Woods. The striker has now scored seven goals in nine appearances this season.
A minute later the rout was complete. Berkovic and Johnson combined to free Blinker, who fired home for his second goal of the week. Woods saved further embarrassment with saves from Viduka and substitute Mark Burchill - on for his customary 12 minutes - and Berkovic made way for Lubomir Moravcik to mutual applause. Johnston was afforded the same privilege with six minutes remaining.
PA Sport Match Report
- Manager Interview
"Nowhere else in Britain would you have got that crowd in the position we are in at the moment and we have among the most loyal supporters in the country."
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