Scottish Cup v Celtic


Fixture: Active Nation Scottish Cup

Attendance: 8933, Kick Off: 12.15pm.

Referee: Charlie Richmond

The Sky TV cameras were present for live transmission of the 21st Scottish Cup tie between Dunfermline and Celtic meaning the match kicked off at 12.15pm on a Sunday afternoon in front of a crowd of 8933. Dunfermline Manager, Jim McIntyre brought in Calum Woods and Alex Burke.  Greg Ross and Joe Cardle dropped to the bench.

Celtic made no fewer than seven changes from the side that lost to Kilmarnock on Tuesday night.  Only Artur Boruc, Landry Nguemo, Diomansy Kamara and Glenn Loovens survived. Scott Brown, Morten Rasmussen, Paul Caddis, Marc Crosas, Edson Braafheid, Georgios Samaras and Josh Thompson started.

The visitors kicked off attacking the goal at the McCathie Stand end and after incessant early pressure forced a sixth minute corner on the right that Greg Fleming punched away only to have to fight off Georgios Samaras when the ball was quickly returned. The Pars survived that scare and another corner that was overstruck in eighth minute.

Loovens got his head on a Marc Crosas free kick and earned a 12th minute corner when the ball went behind off a Dunfermline player.  Woods cleared the cross in from the left but Celtic continued to pile on the pressure. Referee Charlie Richmond took the heat off penalising the Celtic challenges at a 17th minute Nguemo corner.

In 19th minute however the visitors got the goal that they had threatened.  Braafheid took the ball to the left byeline to cross for Samaras, he hit the crossbar and then Neil McGregor with the follow up.  The ball broke to Diomansy KAMARA on the right and he smashed home the opener with a terrific right footed finish just under the crossbar from 18 yards.

Celtic`s lead lasted only 73 seconds and oh how pleasing it was to hear the Pars support out cry the Celtic celebration. Nick Phinn caught a long ball out of defence by Woods on the right and David GRAHAM connected with the cut back to sidefoot the ball into the far left of the Celtic net.

The Pars definitely took heart from their equaliser and Phinn was unlucky from an overhead attempt from a Kirk lay off.  In 27 minutes Woods swung over a ball from the right and Steven Bell was brushed off the ball by Paul Caddis.  Charlie Richmond pointed to the spot and showed the Celtic player a yellow card.  Andy KIRK stepped up and converted the penalty plonking the ball in the bottom right.

In 35 minutes Samaras scooped a Braafheid corner into the home support and Dunfermline defended another from the right a minute later.  Fleming held a low effort from Kamara and Phinn was caught offside as the Pars tried a counter attack.

Burke was short with a pass back but Rasmussen was beaten to the ball by Fleming.  The Celtic support was growing increasingly concerned and as the ball bounced around the Pars box, Burke headed behind for yet another Celtic corner that fortunately Loovens headed high over the crossbar.  There was a scare when Brown fed Caddis the ball in 42 minutes that he belted low into the six yard box. Fleming stopped the ball and the defence cleared.

Next minute however the defence got ripped open. A crossed ball from the left corner flag by Edson Braafheid was headed down at McGregor by Brown and as the ball pinballed off Fleming, Morten RASMUSSEN eventually stuck the ball away for the equaliser.

Half Time: Dunfermline 2 Celtic 2

Tony Mowbray brought Robbie Keane off the bench for the restart to replace Marc Crosas. The Pars kicked off and immediately took the game to Celtic winning an early corner. Willie Gibson got a shot on target in 49 when he played a one two off Phinn on the right side of the Celtic box but Boruc held easily at his near post.

In 54 Keane got to the left byeline and hammered over a low drive that Fleming saved but could not hold. McGregor cleared Rasmussen`s follow up and the inviting loose ball was desperately and welcomingly blasted away. Minutes later Keane threatened to waltz throuh the right side of the Pars defence but he took on one defender too many and the chance was gone.

It was always going to prove extremely difficult to keep the Hoops out when they were piling forward. In 58 Fleming made a fantastic save as Keane burst through on the right but the next minute Kamara`s cross from the right was turned into his own goal by WOODS under pressure from Rasmussen from just yards out.

Ten minutes later Rasmussen received the ball on the top of the home box and threaded it through for Keane. McCann challenged but Charlie Richmond deemed another penalty as the Irishman tumbled.  KEANE took responsibility and opened his Celtic account sending Fleming the wrong way. The travelling support cheered the signature Keane celebration cartwheel and forward tumble.

Joe Cardle came on for Dunfermline and Graeme Holmes for Andy Kirk.  Bell was pushed up alongside Graham but it was the SPL side who continued to look more likely scorers.  Keane spread the ball right for Aiden McGeady and his chip from the angle just escaped over the crossbar. The second half sub followed that with another that suffered the same fate from a slightly better position.

Zheng Zhi conceded a free kick and after Greg Ross replaced Calum Woods, Willie Gibson thumped a 25 yard free kick over the crossbar. Celtic might have added to their tally and they came close.  For the Fifers Cardle sent a half chance just outside the right post.

With the final whistle at 2.05pm the Pars went out the cup but it had been a great team performance with everyone who represented the club on the park putting in a real shift.  So it remains 42 years since Dunfermline last defeated the Hoops in the Scottish Cup.

DUNFERMLINE: Greg Fleming; Calum Woods (Greg Ross 81), Neil McGregor, Andy Dowie, Austin McCann (c); Willie Gibson, Steven Bell, Nick Phinn (Joe Cardle 69), Alex Burke, David Graham, Andy Kirk (Graeme Holmes 74).
SUBS: Paul Willis, Greg Paterson (GK)
SCORER: Graham (21), Kirk (27 pen)
YELLOW CARD: Graham (29), Woods (39), McCann (68)

CELTIC: Artur Boruc; Paul Caddis (Zheng Zhi 69), Josh Thompson, Glenn Loovens, Edson Braafheid; Scott Brown, Marc Crosas (Robbie Keane HT), Landry Nguemo, Diomansy Kamara (Aiden McGeady 66), Morten Rasmussen, Georgios Samaras,
SUBS: Thomas Rogne, Lukasz Zaluska (GK).
SCORER: Kamara (19), Rasmussen (43), Woods (59 og), Keane (68 pen)
YELLOW CARD: Caddis (27)

WEATHER: Dry but dull 6C

NEXT MATCH (away) First Division v Ross County
Saturday 13th February 2010, kick off 3.00pm

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