NextGen Series: Celtic 2-1 Manchester City
Vital Manchester City received the following press release from the NextGen Series newsroom.
Last night, Celtic and Manchester City clashed at a foggy Celtic Park in what was a crunch game for Group 1. The Scots recently came off the back of a 4-2 victory in the reverse fixture at Hyde, while City were yet to pick up a point in the tournament.
The hosts dominated the opening exchanges, pressing well and forcing Manchester City into some sloppy errors. The breakthrough came through Dylan McGeouch, fresh from a first team call up, after he sliced through the City defence and rifled the ball past Keeper Tom Halsall. Captain Marcus Fraser, also back in Celtic's U19 team after playing 45 minutes in the Europa League last week, grabbed the second for the home side to take a 2-0 lead into the break.
Beginning the second half with real intent, Manchester City came out with Denis Suarez and Albert Rusnak, opening up the Celtic defence on numerous occasions but with no real threat to the Celtic goal. However, it was Rusnak who brought his side back into contention with an incredible 25-yard strike that flew past keeper Robbie Thomson after 70 minutes. City had the ascendancy for the remaining 20 minutes but could not find the back of the net and Celtic held on for the crucial 3 points, keeping their qualification dreams alive.
Celtic travel to the Mini Estadi at the end of November to play Barcelona whilst City host French side Marseille in their final NextGen Group game.
Celtic Coach John Kennedy was ecstatic with the result...
'We're delighted with the boy's performance tonight. We've got our eye on the next stages but importantly the tournament is proving to be a great platform for the team to develop further. We know there's still a lot of work to do but we will be doing our very best to try and go as far as possible.'
Commenting on the game, Justin Andrews, co-founder of NextGen said...
'Another exciting NextGen game, packed with high quality football. Both teams played well but Celtic are now a step closer to securing their place in the final stages. It's great to see these young British teams playing at such a great level.'
The full time score and scorers:
Celtic 2 (McGeouch, Fraser) - 1 Manchester City (Rusnak)