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Celtic crash out of UEFA Youth League after defeat to Shakhtar Donetsk

Celtic U19s’ slim hopes of advancing from the UEFA Youth League Group Stage were extinguished after they lost 1-0 to Shakhtar Donetsk at Airdrie’s Excelsior Stadium on Tuesday.

A win would have taken the Hoops onto six points in Group F, the same as their Ukrainian counterparts going into the final matchday, however, the win for Shakhtar sees them progress to the play-off stage at the expense of both Celtic and RB Leipzig, who played out a narrow 3-2 defeat against group winners Real Madrid.

Photo: David Crawford

The boys in green made just the one change from their last UEFA Youth League match against RB Leipzig, an enforced one with Daniel Kelly replacing the suspended MacKenzie Carse.

Shakhtar too only made one change from their 3-0 defeat against Real Madrid on matchday four, with Oleksandr Yushchenko dropping to the bench in place of Anton Drozd.

Photo: David Crawford

Shakhtar had their first look at goal ten minutes in when a low ball from the right-hand side by Drozd slid into the path of striker Vladyslav Pohorilyi, who couldn’t make the necessary contact before the ball was eventually cleared by Dylan Corr.

The first attempt of the game went the way of the home side when Rocco Vata found a half-yard of space just outside the box to fire a shot which was deflected by the Shakhtar defence and gathered by goalkeeper Denis Tvardovskyi.

Just a couple of minutes later Celtic had another glimpse of goal when a wonderful ball down the right by Vata was hit by Brooks, forcing Tvardovskyi to palm behind for a corner.

Celtic had a golden opportunity to take the lead in the match when captain Matthew Anderson was brought down in the box after having his shirt tugged. Adam Brooks stepped up to take it and while he forced the keeper the wrong way, his low shot also drifted wide of the right-hand post.

Shakhtar looked dangerous on the counter-attack and nearly made Celtic pay in the 24th minute. Pohorilyi cut the ball back for Kyryio Siheiev but the forwards weak effort was easily collected by Celtic’s keeper Toby Oluwayemi.

Photo: David Crawford

After 30 minutes the game looked very even, with Celtic enjoying the bulk of possession, though rarely breaking down an organised Shakhtar defence.

They did threaten though when a low cross by Anderson was met at the front post by Brooks only for the forward to fire wide.

Shakhtar had their best opportunity of the half five minutes from the interval only to be denied by a fantastic double save from Oluwayemi, first from Pohorilyi from 18 yards, and then the follow-up from Marian Farina.

Celtic produced the first effort of the second half when Davidson crossed into the path of Tsoanelo Letsosa who side-footed the ball just wide of goal.

The ten minutes after saw both teams attempting to break the other down without either side creating any clear-cut chances. That changed, however, on the hour mark when Shakhtar opened the scoring. Some good play from Siheiev saw him play in full-back Andrii Buleza on the left, who fired across goal into the path of Pohorilyi, who needed only a touch to place the ball into the net.

Celtic had the bulk of the possession after that but found themselves up against a strong and resolute Shakhtar defence, who saw out the remainder of the game for the win, as well as a guaranteed second-placed finish in the group.

Photo: David Crawford

Celtic will round off their campaign with a difficult trip away to Real Madrid, who previously put six past the Hoops in the first game of the group.

Celtic U19s

71. Toby Oluwayemi (GK)

40. Bruno Davidson

52. Dylan Corr

53. Benjamin Summers

58. Adam Brooks

62. Ben McPherson

63. Matthew Anderson ©

64. Tsoanelo Letsosa

69. Rocco Vata

92. Daniel Kelly

93. Mitchell Robertson


70. Josh Clarke (GK)

46. Magnus MacKenzie

51. Ben Quinn

66. Corey Thomson

81. Lewis Dobbie

86. Benny-Jackson Luyeye

96. Evan Easton

Referee: Jamie Robinson

Shakhtar Donetsk U19s

1. Denis Tvardovskyi © (GK)

2. Oleksandr Rosputko

3. Roman Savchenko

4. Marian Farina

5. Andrii Buleza

6. Ivan Losenko

7. Anton Drozd

8. Yevhan Yanovich

9. Vladyslav Pohorilyi

10. Kyryio Siheiev

11. Oleh Pushkarov


12. Denys Barchenko (GK)

13. Oleksandr Bashmarin

14. Mykola Oharkov

15. Oleh Chuiko

16. Vasyl Bundash

17. Oleksandr Yushchenko

18. Marian Bats



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