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Celts come from behind to defeat Bairns

Celtic 3

Allan 38, Mackay-Steven 51, Breslin 62.

Falkirk 2

Cooper 11, Shepherd 31.
  • Tuesday, 15 December 2015
  • Cappielow Park, Greenock.
  • Under 20´s
  • SPFL Development League

Martin McConnell | YFS South Lanarkshire Senior Reporter
Author's Bio | Articles by Author | [email protected]

Celtic made their return to SPFL development league football with a 3-2 win against an impressive Falkirk side, closing the gap with Hamilton to three points. The Celtic starting line up included the likes of Gary Mackay-Steven, Carlton Cole, Scott Allan and Tyler Blackett, so it was a surprise to everyone when Falkirk took the lead against the run of play.

Celtic had an early warning after Scott Shepherd found himself one on one with Logan Bailly, when he cut in from wide and sent his shot straight at the keeper. Celtic countered by racing up field and winning themselves a corner, Calvin Millar sent to the near post and Carlton Cole headed clear over the cross bar.

With eleven minutes gone, the Bairns broke and the ball was played wide ahead of Alex Cooper, the Falkirk striker stormed forward and blasted into the Celtic net from twenty two yards, 0-1. Within the minute, Shepherd received on the edge of the penalty area, his shot being well saved by Bailly.

Celtic perked up and began passing the ball about in the torrential conditions,  Allan sent wide for the Jack Breslin who immediately shot on goal, but Alex Tokarczyk saved spectacularly. From the corner, Cole headed on goal from the near post but Tokarczyk covered his goal and saved comfortably.

Cooper made another dangerous run, playing a one two with Ryan Sinnamon before shooting from twenty two yards, Bailly was lucky that his trailing leg saved. Thomas Grant then sent the ball long, Shepherd won his battle with Fiacre Kelleher and cut back for Cooper to cross in, but the Celtic defence cleared to safety.

Just after the half hour, the visitors doubled their lead when Thomas Grant made a run from midfield, leaving a couple of Celtic players in his wake. He played wide to Shepherd, who then sent into the corner of the net, 0-2. The deficit was then halved when Calvin Miller’s shot struck the post and the rebound was headed in by Scott Allan, 1-2.

  • Half Time:
  • Celtic
  • 1-2
  • Falkirk

The score was levelled on the fifty first minute, when the ball was chipped into the Falkirk penalty area by Miller and Gary Mackay-Steven struck from twelve yards, 2-2. Within the minute Celtic were back in the penalty area, Mackay-Steven cutting the ball inside for Cole’s outstretched foot to send toward goal, Tokarczyk saved comfortably.

Some classy footwork was on display when Miller and Mackay-Steven combined well with impeccably timed back heels that ended with a Miller strike being saved. Jack Breslin then put Celtic ahead for the first time with a blistering shot from out wide, it took a deflection on its way to the back of the net, 3-2.

Allan showed his skilful footwork again on route to goal, before stinging the hands of Tokarczyk in the Falkirk goal. Mark Hill tested the keeper with a long range strike, Aidan McIlduff had an effort saved before a Mackay-Steven free kick was well saved by the Falkirk keeper.

As the clock wound down, and the Bairns chased that elusive equaliser, Cameron Blues had a final effort on goal from twenty five yards. It was struck well but Bailly had it covered from the moment it left Blues foot, saving easily.


  • Full Time:
  • Celtic
  • 3-2
  • Falkirk


1. Logan Bailly
2. Jack Breslin
3. Tyler Blackett
4. Jamie McCart
5. Fiacre Kelleher
6. Mark Hill
7. Gary Mackay-Steven
8. Regan Hendry
9. Carlton Cole
10. Scott Allan
11. Calvin Miller
12. Aidan McIlduff
13. Conor Hazard
14. Innes Murray
15. Sam Wardrop
16. Brandon Payne
1. Alex Tokarczyk
2. Mark Finlayson
3. Ryan Sinnamon
4. Cameron Blues
5. Paul Watson
6. Kyle Johnson
7. Thomas Grant
8. Ryan Blair
9. Scott Shepherd
10. David Smith
11. Alex Cooper
12. Lewis McMinn
14. Taylor Evans
15. Reis Peggie
16. Conor Langton
17. Mark Stone
Star Player
Gary Mackay-Steven and Scott Allan both had a great game for Celtic. Both scored and showed bags of creativity to help get their side back into a tough match.
Scott Shepherd - Scored a decent goal and along with Alex Cooper, tore Celtic apart in the first half. Made good runs and always dangerous on the ball.
Magic Moment
Calvin Miller and Mackay-Steven combining well with some great inter play that left the fans wanting more.
Alex Cooper goal. Great long ball played into Celtic half for Cooper to make a lung bursting run and blast in from twenty two yards.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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