Celtic out of Champions League as Ferencvaros sack Parkhead

Lennon’s side drop into Europa qualifiers after shock home defeat

Celtic are out of the Champions League after their 2-1 defeat at home to Ferencvaros. Photograph: Andrew Milligan/PA

Celtic are out of the Champions League after their 2-1 defeat at home to Ferencvaros. Photograph: Andrew Milligan/PA

 

Champions League qualifiying second round: Celtic 1 Ferencvaros 2

Ferencvaros delivered a Champions League sucker punch to Celtic with a stunning 2-1 win at Parkhead.

David Siger shot the Hungarian side into the lead in the seventh minute of the second qualifier but Ryan Christie, deputising for the injured Odsonne Edouard as the Hoops started without a recognised striker, levelled in the 53rd minute with a deflected shot.

Neil Lennon’s side dominated possession before and after the break but in the 74th minute, against the run of play, Tokmac Nguen restored the visitors’ advantage with a breakaway goal which meant the Scottish champions dropped down to the Europa League qualifiers.

Sergei Rebrov’s side delivered on their promise to be a step up in class from KR Reykjavik who lost 6-0 in the first qualifier at Celtic Park last week.

Neil Lennons after Celtic’s defeat to Ferencvaros at Celtic Park. Photograph: Ian MacNicol/Getty
Neil Lennons after Celtic’s defeat to Ferencvaros at Celtic Park. Photograph: Ian MacNicol/Getty

The Hungarian outfit did not lose in seven away games in Europe last season — five draws and two wins — and thus arrived in Glasgow with confidence.

Christie led the line in the absence of Edouard while defenders Hatem Elhamed and Kristoffer Ajer and winger James Forrest returned to the side, the latter making his 400th appearance for the Hoops.

Strikers Albian Ajeti and Patryk Klimala were judged by Lennon not to be match fit and they watched Forrest have the first effort on target after four minutes, his left-footed drive beaten away by Ferencvaros keeper Denes Dibusz.

The visitors then sustained a brief spell of pressure before a swift break saw them win a corner from which they took the lead.

The Hoops’ defence appeared to clear their lines but Somalia headed to Siger and he had time to take a touch before powering a drive from 22 yards past keeper Vasilis Barkas and into the far corner of the net.

Ferencvaros’ David Siger celebrates scoring the opener at Parkhead. Photograph: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire
Ferencvaros’ David Siger celebrates scoring the opener at Parkhead. Photograph: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

Celtic kept plugging away amid cascading rain.

Christie and midfielders Olivier Ntcham and Mohamed Elyounoussi all had efforts which were either blocked or sped wide and just on the half-hour mark Christie failed to connect with a Greg Taylor cross only a few yards out.

Elyounoussi had two more attempts and midfielder Callum McGregor had a shot saved as the home side finished the first half strongly.

Celtic got the goal their pressure deserved eight minutes after the break when Elyounoussi, after working a one-two with Forrest, set up Christie who curled the ball over the grasping Dibusz with the help of a nick off Adnan Kovacevic’s head.

Celtic celebrate Ryan Christie’s second-half equaliser against Ferencvaros. Photograph: Andrew Milligan/PA
Celtic celebrate Ryan Christie’s second-half equaliser against Ferencvaros. Photograph: Andrew Milligan/PA

Ferencvaros now looked less convincing.

Moments later Ntcham crashed a shot off the turf and against the bar after taking a cut-back from Elhamed before Christie’s shot escaped the far post.

Elyounoussi had the ball in the net after taking a Taylor pass but the flag was up early.

Then, out of the blue, Nguen raced on to a long clearance out of defence and held off the attention of Elhamed before squeezing in from the tightest of angles.

Celtic were desperate in their response. Christie worked some space in the box and cut the ball back but found no takers and the home side eventually ran out of time, including five minutes added on, with their Champions League dreams ended.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.