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0 vs 3
Played
November 27, 2013 1:15 AM IST
Celtic Park — Glasgow
Referee:‬ C. Çakιr‎
Attendance:‬ 58619‎
 
 
Kaká 13′
 
 
Top of the Match
Kaká
Kaká
Milan
Kaká
Kaká
Milan
Flop of the Match
Virgil van Dijk
Virgil van Dijk
Celtic
Virgil van Dijk
Virgil van Dijk
Celtic

Celtic 0-3 AC Milan: Kaka & Balotelli on target to end hosts' qualification hopes

A limp display from Neil Lennon's side saw Massimiliano Allegri's side claim a comfortable victory and boost their chances of reaching the knockout stages of the Champions League

By Dom Farrell

Mario Balotelli Nigel De Jong Valter Birsa Celtic Ac Milan Champions League 11262013
Getty
AC Milan halted a seven-game winless slump by clinically ending Celtic's Champions League campaign with a 3-0 win in Glasgow.

Celtic were backed by the cacophony of noise synonymous with their Champions League nights at home on Tuesday, but slack set-piece defending decisively undermined their efforts in this must-win Group H encounter.

Kaka and Cristian Zapata were the beneficiaries either side of half-time, leaving Mario Balotelli to seal the points on a night when the enigmatic Italy international proved a thorn in the side of the home defence.

Ajax's shock win over Barcelona means Celtic are unable to even secure the consolation of a Europa League place, while Milan must avoid defeat against the Dutch champions at San Siro in a fortnight's time to secure their passage.

MATCH VIEW
By Chris Myson

That was not the night Celtic had planned. Coming into the game with everything to play for, all of a sudden Neil Lennon's side can kiss goodbye to European football for another season.

The Scottish champions will be frustrated by the manner of the first two goals they conceded - both from corners - but ultimately they have not been the same side in the Champions League this season.

For AC Milan, a controlled and impressive performance eases the pressure on Massimilano Allegri and it was great to see Kaka showing flashes of his old brilliance again.
Neil Lennon made four changes to his Celtic starting XI, including a decision to start James Forrest despite the winger being arrested earlier on Tuesday over an alleged sexual assault.

Balotelli led Milan's attack, while Valter Birsa and Riccardo Montolivo came in for Alessandro Matri and Sulley Muntari after Saturday's 1-1 draw with Genoa.

Derk Boerrigter should have put Celtic ahead on his first Champions League start for the club after just two minutes, but he scuffed a back-post volley after Milan goalkeeper Christian Abbiati made the first of a series of misjudgements from Charlie Mulgrew's corner.

A minute later, Balotelli botched a chance to open the scoring as he dragged wide having escaped the attentions of the home defence.

Milan defender Zapata produced a vital last-ditch tackle when Mulgrew's ninth-minute shot fell to Beram Kayal in front of goal, and the visitors were ahead soon after.

Kaka was left completely unmarked to nod home at close quarters as goalkeeper Fraser Forster elected to stay on his line from Birsa's right-wing corner.

Daniele Bonera then made a timely block after Mulgrew picked out Boerrigter, but Celtic were almost hit on the break immediately as Kaka released Balotelli to drill narrowly over.

Celtic continued to press manfully before the break but their fate was sealed by two key incidents shortly after the resumption.

Centre-back Virgil van Dijk smashed a volley into Abbiati from point-black range when it might have been easier to score in the 47th minute - and his defensive colleagues were once again undone from a set-piece two minutes later.

Birsa's delivery was superb again, and half-time substitute Antonio Nocerino knocked across goal for Zapata to apply the finish.

To compound Celtic's misery, Balotelli sealed the points with an hour played after Van Dijk had headed home from an offside position.

The former Manchester City striker demonstrated his pace, power and poise to hold off Efe Ambrose and finish Montolivo's lofted pass.

Forrest almost reduced the arrears when he poked wide from Mikael Lustig's ball with the impressive Nigel de Jong in close attendance.

The game petered out as Celtic's enthusiasm faded and Massimiliano Allegri's men kept their hopes of reaching the last 16 very much alive.


Celtic

1
Fraser Forster
Goalkeeper
2.00
3
E. Izaguirre
Midfielder
65′
3.50
15
E. Ambrose
Defender
2.50
-
Virgil van Dijk
Defender
63′
1.50
21
Charles Mulgrew
Defender
3.00
2
M. Lustig
Defender
3.50
15
Kris Commons
Striker
57′ 65′
2.00
33
Beram Kayal
Midfielder
31′
2.50
49
James Forrest
Striker
80′
2.50
9
2.50
21
2.50

Milan

3.50
32
4.00
17
3.00
20
3.00
25
3.50
14
Valter Birsa
Midfielder
13′ 72′
3.00
16
Andrea Poli
Midfielder
3.50
18
3.50
28
3.00
34
Nigel De Jong
Midfielder
4.00
22
Kaká
Midfielder
13′ 80′
4.00
45

Substitutes

24
Lukasz Zaluska
Goalkeeper
 - 
-
 - 
28
Joe Ledley
Defender
31′
2.50
-
Tomas Rogic
Midfielder
80′
 - 
10
2.50
-
 - 
20
 - 

Substitutes

 - 
35
2.50
21
Kevin Constant
Midfielder
72′
 - 
26
3.50
-
 - 
24
 - 
7
Robinho
Striker
80′
 - 
32

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
Group A Matchday 4
Times In IST
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
14 1
Zlatan Ibrahimovic Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Striker
PSG
10 1
Lionel Messi Lionel Messi
Striker
Barcelona
8 2
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Striker
Atlético de Madrid
7 0
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
6 2