Leverkusen - Celtic

Europe: Europa League
Leverkusen R. Andrich (16), R. Andrich (82), M. Diaby (87)
Celtic J. Juranović (Pen. 40), J. Filipe (56)

Leverkusen battle hard to overcome a determined Celtic in 3-2 thriller

By Ultan Corcoran

A Robert Andrich brace and two Wirtz assists turn around end-to-end game for Die Werkself

Robert Andrich.
Robert Andrich. Photo: Bayer 04 Leverkusen

Group G leaders Bayer Leverkusen hosted Scottish giants’ Celtic tonight in Matchday 5 of the Europa League group stage. Die Werkself made several changes from their 1-0 victory over VfL Bochum last weekend. In defence Odilon Kossounou and Piero Hincapie replaced Edmond Tapsoba and Daley Sinkgraven, while in midfield German duo Demirbay and Amiri made way for Palacios and Paulinho.

Gerardo Seoane’s side didn’t wait long before scoring the first goal of the game. Robert Andrich easily nodded home Florian Wirtz’s corner after being left completely unmarked with acres of space to covert from 6 yards out.

Celtic equalised to make the score 1-1 on 40 minutes. B04 goalkeeper Hradecky smashed into Celtic striker Furuhashi while attempting to clear a cross, giving the referee no option but to award a penalty. Juranovic did his best Antonin Panenka impression as he dinked an incredibly composed and audacious spot kick in off the crossbar.

Adli should have regained Leverkusen’s lead on 53 minutes, however Hart did brilliantly to smother the ball at the feet of the French striker. Less than three minutes later Celtic went 1-2 in front. An unfortunate slip for ex-Celtic player Frimpong let Furuhashi set up Portuguese winger Jota who hammered home first time of asking.

Andrich got his 2nd goal of the night on 82 minutes. Substitute Amiri cushioned the ball down for the central midfielder who drilled a shot under Hart to maintain their unbeaten European campaign thus far. B04 flipped the game on its head again soon after. German teenage sensation Wirtz lifted a ball to Diaby on the edge of the box who made it 3-2 with a sweet volley.

This result insured Leverkusen top their respective group ahead of the final Matchday 6 trip to Ferencvaros. Nonetheless, Seoane’s side must quickly turn attentions to the small matter of playing red-hot RB Leipzig, whom they travel to this Sunday afternoon.

1Lukáš Hradecky (C)
30Jeremie Frimpong
6Kossonou Odilon
4Jonathan Tah
33Piero Hincapié ↩75
19Moussa Diaby
8Robert Andrich
25Exequiel Palacios
7Paulinho ↩75
31Amine Adli
27Florian Wirtz ↩89
36Niklas Lomb
40Andrey Lunev
37Emrehan Gedikli
3Panagiotis Retsos
12Edmond Tapsoba ↪89
22Daley Sinkgraven ↪75
11Nadiem Amiri ↪75
15Joe Hart
56Anthony Ralston
20Cameron Carter-Vickers
57Stephen Welsh
88Josip Juranović
6Nir Bitton ↩76
49James Forrest ↩72
14David Turnbull
42Callum McGregor (C)
17João Filipe ↩72
8Kyogo Furuhashi ↩76
29Scott Bain
71Oluwatobi Oluwayemi
10Albian Ajeti ↪76
11Liel Abada ↪72
5Liam Scales
26Osaze Urhoghide
12Ismaila Soro
16James McCarthy ↪76
19Michael Johnston ↪72
30Liam Shaw
47Dane Murray

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