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Celtic brush aside Dundee United to progress to quarter finals

Celtic FC 5

Hill 45' Kerr 66' Johnston 72' Crossan 76' 83'

Dundee United 0

  • Saturday, 03 December 2016
  • Lennoxtown, Celtic Training Centre
  • Under 20´s
  • Scottish FA Youth Cup - R4

Celtic powered their way into the quarter finals of the SFA Youth cup after putting five goals past Development League rivals Dundee United.

A low drive from Mark Hill late in the first half sent the young Celts on their way before second half goals from Josh Kerr, and substitutes Michael Johnston and PJ Crossan, rounded off a comfortable afternoon for the young Celts.

The first half was a scrappy affair, but it was undoubtedly Celtic who had the upper hand as they held onto possession to try and work an opening.

However, it was set pieces that proved the most fruitful avenue for them in the first quarter, as deliveries led to Kerr being denied by United keeper Brett Long, and striker Jack Aitchison hitting the bar.

The Tangerines did look a threat on the break at times, with the pace of Graham Taylor and Matty Smith providing an outlet. But they struggled to produce an end product.

Celtic continued to dominate and pressed high up the pitch, characterised by their marauding full backs Anthony Ralston and Aidan McIlduff. And in the 35th minute the latter showed good pace and skill to surge into the box, only to be denied by the feet of Long.

The deadlock was broken though on the stroke of half time. A Celtic throw on the right hand side landed at the feet of midfielder Mark Hill, who cut inside and rifled a left-footed shot into the bottom corner from 20 yards.

  • Half Time:
  • Celtic FC
  • 1-0
  • Dundee United

Celtic upped the intensity at the start of the second half, adding greater penetration to their already solid passing game.

On 48 minutes, winger Theo Archibald went on a rampaging run down the right hand side, leaving several men in orange in his wake, but his shot was beaten away by Long.

United’s goalkeeper was called into action again moments later, when he smothered a 25 yard volley from Hill.

And he was the hero yet again on the hour mark, as he denied substitute Michael Johnston after some lovely link up play on the edge of the box.

The all-important second goal came for Celtic came in the 66th minute, and they never looked back. It was Hill who turned provider as his corner was met by Kerr, whose glancing header was judged to have crossed the line despite United’s protests.

This opened the game up, with more gaps appearing in the middle of the pitch. And it was Celtic who took advantage of this to create a host of chances, with United toiling.

Archibald crossed for Aitchison on 72 minutes, and the striker flicked it to Johnston, whose brilliant feint created the space for him to fire the ball into the net for Celtic’s third.

And it was four just minutes later as Archibald won the ball in the centre of midfield and fed Regan Hendry on the right hand side of the box, who slipped in substitute Crossan to finish with aplomb.

United struggled to keep hold of the ball under the relentless pressure from Celtic, and were severely punished for it in the 84th minute.

Right back Ralston was gifted the ball in the United half and sprinted to the by-line, flashing the ball across goal for Crossan to tap in his second at the near post.

United did have a great chance for a consolation goal in the dying moments, but Logan Chalmers put his shot past the post following a cut back from Brad Smith.

It was an utterly dominant performance from Celtic, and one which will give them confidence as they prepare to face Manchester City in the UEFA Youth Cup. As for Dundee United, they will want to move on quickly.

  • Full Time:
  • Celtic FC
  • 5-0
  • Dundee United

Lineups

Celtic FC
Dundee United
1. Ross Doohan
2. Anthony Ralston
3. Aidan McIlduff
4. Jamie McCart
5. Josh Kerr
6. Mark Hill
7. Theodore Archibald
8. Regan Hendry
9. Jack Aitchison
10. Kristoffer Ajer
11. Calvin Miller
12. Sam Wardrop
13. Aidan McAdams
14. Daniel Higgins
15. Paul Joseph Crossan
16. Michael Johnston
17. Wallace Duffy
1. Brett Long
2. Gavin Ritchie
3. Jordan Hornby
4. Scott Allardice
5. Scott Reekie
6. Harvey Dailly
7. Louis Appere
8. Brad Smith
9. Matty Smith
10. Aliaster Coote
11. Graham Taylor
12. Jordan Garden
13. Josh Donaldson
14. Dominic McMeekin
15. Logan Chalmers
Star Player
Celtic FC
Dundee United
Mark Hill: The midfielder controlled the game for Celtic and got the crucial first goal. Also set up the second from a corner.
Brett Long: The goalkeeper made some outstanding saves to keep the scoreline down.
Magic Moment
Celtic FC
Dundee United
Mark Hill's opening goal involved some great skill to jink in off the right and fire the shot into the bottom corner.
Brett Long's first half save to brilliantly tip Jack Aitchison's effort round the post.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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