Celtic went out of Europe on a positive note after battling back to earn a point in Istanbul. Craig Fowler gives his take on the performance of each player in green and white.
GK – Craig Gordon – 3
Prior to his mistake this match seemed poised to host a vintage Gordon performance. He made an excellent fingertip stop at his front post to deny Diego and looked confident when coming for cross balls.
Then he let Markovic dribble the ball through his legs with little effort on the part of the attacker. He didn’t have much to do after that, but the damage was done.
RB – Mikael Lustig – 8
In a team full of chronic underachievers in Europe this season, Lustig has flown under the radar somewhat. However, this was more like the old Lustig, the man Celtic fans pined for during his lengthy injury spells.
He was strong in defence and helped out whenever he could in attack, including the cross for Kris Commons to head the visitors level.
CB – Dedryck Boyata – 8
This type of performance is what Celtic were missing in the early group stage games. Aside from one hairy moment when he dribbled himself, and his team, into trouble 25 yards from his own goal, he was solid, both in defence and with the football.
His enthusiasm to charge forward led to the goal as it pulled the Fenerbahce defence out of sorts and freed Lustig on the right.
CB – Jozo Simunovic – 8
Like Boyata, he too gave supporters a scare on one occasion, but otherwise it was a polished defensive performance. In particular he stood up well to the challenge of Fernandão, who he thwarted all by himself on more than one occasion.
LB – Kieran Tierney – 7
This was arguably the left-back’s weakest performance since breaking into the Celtic line-up. Part of that was him being curtailed on the attacking front, since Celtic were forced to sit back, and partly because the opposition finally started to cause him problems. Having said that, it was still a positive showing with a couple of key interceptions, and he continued to be strong in the tackle.
DM – Nir Bitton – 6
There were occasions where he showed his undoubted close control and composure on the football, and then there were times when he would concede possession so needlessly. His early pass through to Nadir Ciftci was a high point in the game for him, and it deserved to lead to a goal.
DM – Stefan Johansen – 5
The injury to Brown, along with the emergence of Tom Rogic and Scott Allan returning to fitness, means we’ll likely see more of Johansen in the defensive midfield role, though there is no doubt it isn’t his strongest position.
On occasion he was weak in the tackle and would often get his team-mates into trouble with ill-advised passes. That said, he still worked hard all over the park and often remained cool with the football in the face of pressure.
MR – Callum McGregor – 7
Arguably had the best showing of Celtic’s starting attackers. His strong running with the football helped ease the pressure on occasion as he dragged his team-mates up the field, even if the final ball was lacking. Defensively he put in a power of work and it’s telling that he remained on the field for the full 90 minute while three of the remaining, and more experienced, midfielders went off.
AMC – Scott Allan – 5
This wasn’t the game for Allan to show Celtic fans and his manager what he’s capable of. The playmaker, from his time in the Championship with Hibernian, is used to starring in a side with plenty of the football. Tonight he was asked to provide the spark on a team forced to sit-in for long periods.
When he got the ball his touch was a little rusty and he was closed down quickly. The reverse pass through for Ciftci (that just carried a little too far) demonstrated the vision that will become a key weapon with more playing time.
ML - Stuart Armstrong - 5
Typical Armstrong performance in a Celtic shirt. Showed his enthusiasm, athleticism and energy with and without the ball, but didn’t do enough to impact the play in the opposition half. He was deservedly the first away player to be subbed off.
READ MORE - Fenerbahce 1 - 1 Celtic: Five takeaways
FC – Nadir Ciftci – 5.5
The only one to get a half-mark. That’s because this writer was stuck between wishing to reward the player for an improved display or facing up to the reality of the performance.
He’s still got to show a lot more if he’s going to have a future at Celtic, but there were little glimpses of the star who dazzled fans at Dundee United for two seasons. Still severely lacks confidence in front of goal but at least looked defiant by trying to get into dangerous areas.
James Forrest – 7
Had he been fit he likely would have started over Armstrong. His ability to run at opposing full-backs, scaring the life out of them, has a real galvanising effect on the rest of his team. They seem to feed off his energy. As per usual, his final ball wasn’t quite there, but he remains an asset to the team regardless.
Tom Rogic – 6
The quietest of the three substitutes but another who impacted proceedings in a positive manner. Even when he’s not influencing play in the final third, his skill and quick feet allow him to move attacks along before defenders can put him under pressure, thus opening space for others.
Kris Commons – 8
With Fenerbache down to 10 men, there was an expectation something would happen when the veteran emerged on the touch-line, ready to be brought on.
He remains Celtic’s most potent goal threat outside of Leigh Griffiths. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing, you can decide.