Celtic 3-1 Rennes: Neil Lennon’s side top group with victory

Mikey Johnston scored in his first appearance since the beginning of September

Celtic confirmed high space in Europa League Crew E with one game to spare after a chuffed eradicate over Rennes.

The victory, coupled with Lazio’s 1-0 victory over CFR Cluj, potential Neil Lennon’s side will steer certain of Champions League dropouts in February’s final 32.

Lewis Morgan’s 2nd Celtic purpose and a Ryan Christie effort had the hosts up to stride, and Mikey Johnston added to the tally with a great one-two mark.

Adrien Hunou’s glancing header offered a dead consolation for the French side.

Celtic will end their campaign in Romania against Cluj in two weeks in a game that is now a stupid rubber.

‘Feel-honest night for Celtic machine’

Celtic could maybe well moreover afford to mark with out Odsonne Edouard – he had “a niggle” – and soundless fill this Europa League tie in the accumulate by the atomize. These are heady days for Lennon’s side, a neighborhood that has transformed itself since elimination from the Champions League on the hands of Cluj. That failure seems to be esteem an eternity ago.

Here’s a workers on the up and up and any other genuinely feel-honest night for Celtic in Europe. Rennes could maybe well need had no probability of progressing out of the neighborhood and to boot they’ll moreover presumably be on a roam of upright two wins in 11 video games, but they are a tight outfit that were made to recognize in vogue for essentially the most portion.

Olivier Ntcham and Scott Brown were impressively influential in the center of the park, Christie turned into as soon as his traditional buzz-**** in assault and Morgan – taking part in in alien territory as Edouard’s replacement – turned into as soon as wonderful. When James Forrest came off, Johnston went on and his purpose turned into as soon as the purchase of the bunch. All three goalscorers were young Scottish avid gamers, none of them a day over 24.

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Fraser Forster had his saves to develop – one early on from Romain Del Castillo and a double block in a while that turned into as soon as excellent – but Celtic were spacious fee for his or her victory and thoroughly deserving of winning the neighborhood. With that triumph comes the prize of a residence in the final 32 as a seeded workers.

There’s soundless a game to play in the neighborhood and Brown will omit it through suspension. He could maybe well maybe no longer care a jot. The work has been done. The captain can recharge the batteries at home that night.

Celtic went forward when Forrest came in from the left and performed it into Morgan, whose timing and precision were excellent. He swept it home with aplomb. The 2nd came upright sooner than the atomize when Brown showed his same previous dedication to eradicate a header which stumbled on its potential to Christie.

The midfielder, knocking on for a purpose every other game this season, took a gape up and thumped one heading in the correct direction, the ball bouncing in front of going in the help of Edouard Mendy. The fault lay with the goalkeeper, but Christie’s strike turned into as soon as pure the final same. What an obligatory portion of this Celtic machine he has change into.

The web site visitors threatened early in the brand new half of but they would well maybe now not earn the simpler of Forster in spite of getting two stabs at it from point-blank vary. The foremost one from Diafra Sakho bounced straight help off the colossus, the 2nd one, from Theoson Siebatcheu turned into as soon as touched on to the post. The Rennes avid gamers could maybe well moreover scarcely bear in mind it.

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Morgan had a solid penalty claim waved away when Mendy gave the influence to fill brought him down, but with 15 minutes left Celtic added their third and it turned into as soon as a magnificence.

Johnston hadn’t long arrive on the sphere for his first appearance since the famous day of September, but when he performed it to Ntcham and then took it help off him in the box, Rennes were done in. The price of thought and stride of crawl turned into as soon as too valuable, as turned into as soon as the mark, firmly place away to Mendy’s upright. Unprecedented.

Lennon triggered Leigh Griffiths against the end and the striker practically made it four upright for his effort to be kicked away by Mendy. The residence would fill erupted had he scored.

Rennes obtained a consolation through a beautiful header from Hunou, nonetheless it didn’t place the slightest dent on Celtic’s night. Another step forward in an exhilarating and soundless increasing European narrative.

Man of the match – Olivier Ntcham

For filling in so impressively for Edouard, Morgan is a valuable contender, but Ntcham turned into as soon as terrific available. Artful, impactful, defensively solid and offensively inventive, the Frenchman had a mountainous scream in this beautiful victory.

Match stats

  • Celtic fill avoided defeat in every of their first five neighborhood stage video games to a Champions League/Europa League campaign for the famous time.
  • They fill obtained four consecutive video games in famous European competitions (excluding qualifiers) for the famous time since November 2002 in the Uefa Cup.
  • Rennes fill misplaced four consecutive Europa League matches, their worst such lunge in all European competitions since December 2005.
  • Forrest has been straight alive to with three needs in his final four Europa League video games – as many as he had in his previous 23 appearances in the competition.
  • Christie’s purpose turned into as soon as Celtic’s first from beginning air the box in a famous European competition (excluding qualifiers) since Callum McGregor against Ajax in the Europa League in November 2015.
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