Fagan, McFadden goals stun Celtic

Motherwell 2 Celtic 1

The whole country was still in mourning after Scotland’s humiliating 2-2 draw with the Faroe Islands while the men from Ibrox are already trying to play catch-up in the title.

But goals from homegrown stars Shaun Fagan and James McFadden stunned the Scottish champions and left the watching Vogts with renewed optimism that things are not as bad as they seem.

John Hartson gave Celtic a late consolation, but they paid the price for missing too many chances throughout the game.

After their weekend failure, Paul Lambert was heavily involved in the action, in front of Vogts and Under-21 coach Rainer Bonhof, but a rush of blood from his international team-mate Robert Douglas almost cost the champions in the fifth minute.

The former Dundee goalkeeper seemed to get caught in two minds and failed to cut out a good left-wing cross from Stephen Pearson, but rising star McFadden was unable to capitalise.

Celtic looked dangerous on the break and from dead-ball situations and they almost surprised the home side in the 12th minute.

Stilian Petrov’s corner was allowed to get through a ruck of players, but Steven Hammell was on the line to clear. But three minutes later and Celtic had a glorious chance to take the lead through Henrik Larsson.

The Swede timed his run to perfection to get on the end of Lambert’s pass, but he was unable to clip his attempted lob over the onrushing Motherwell goalkeeper Stephen Woods.

Larsson looked to have beaten the offside trap again moments later from another Lambert throughball, but the linesman flagged for offside to the annoyance of the Celtic players and supporters.

The home side were battling valiantly and Scott Leitch needed to dig David Partridge out of big trouble in the 20th minute.

The former Dundee United man badly misjudged the bounce of the ball and Larsson reacted to get a sight of goal, but the Motherwell skipper slid in to dispossess the Swede.

But the game was thrilling to watch and at the other end an audacious drive from Pearson from outside the box had the home crowd on their feet, but his effort sailed just over the bar.

Celtic again responded with the in-form Steve Guppy again causing chaos in the Motherwell box, but this time Valgaeren headed straight at the grateful Woods.

But his opposite number again looked uneasy in the 40th minute when he spilled a cross from McFadden, but Ulrik Laursen saved his blushes to get in ahead of Keith Lasley.

MOTHERWELL: Woods, Corrigan, Partridge, Sengewald, Pearson (Ramsey 52), Lasley, Leitch (Fagan 71), Adams, Hammell, McFadden (Ferguson 90), Lehmann.

CELTIC: Douglas, Valgaeren, Balde, Laursen, Agathe (Maloney 70), Lambert, Petrov, Thompson (Hartson 64), Guppy, Larsson, Sutton.

Referee: W Young (Scotland).

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