Tony Mowbray has overcome his first hurdle as Celtic manager, as his side clinched an all important European victory, beating Dynamo Moscow 2-0 last night. It was the first time in Celtic’s history that they’ve overturned a first leg home defeat in Europe, but it was a thoroughly deserved victory, even if it was against all the odds.
The sides last European win away from home was on August 13, 2003, against Hungarian outfit MTK. The 4-0 success came courtesy of goals from Henrik Larsson, Didier Agathe, Stilliyan Petrov and Chris Sutton. They also faced a Dynamo who have never recorded a home win over a Scottish club. In their only home clash against Scottish opposition, they were trashed 4-1 by Rangers in 2001. One of those records had to give, and luckily for Celtic it went in their favour.
Goals from Scott McDonald, and Georgios Samaras secured the vital victory. Speaking after the game Samaras told the supporters – ‘Don’t call me a hero’
“I think we got what we deserved in the end,” said the Celtic manager Tony Mowbray. “Over the two 90 minutes, the better team came through the tie. I said all along they’re a very good side, a very organised side, but they at times lacked the individual quality that I thought we had and that’s shown tonight. We controlled the game for long, long spells and got our rewards in the end.”
Dynamo Moscow played poorly throughout the game, and Celtic capitalised on this, much to the delight of their fans and manager.
“I always believed we’d score,” added Mowbray. “Nobody’s getting carried away. We’ve got a lot of hard work ahead of us and we’ve got to keep going.”
Celtic now enter tomorrows Champions League play-off draw unseeded, where teams such as Arsenal, Lyon and Atletico Madrid await. Last nights victory now guaranttes them another two leg tie, but the Scottish side are now safe in the knowledge that if they fail in the play-off round, they will be entered into the group stages of the new Europa league.