Celtic U17 1-0 Rangers U17: Fan tension clouds win

AFTER the City of Glasgow Cup final which was won 1-0 by Celtic at their home ground against Rangers if was confirmed that damage had been caused to the ground in the area where Ibrox fans had been situated.

A jubilant Celtic Under-17 side celebrate with the City of Glasgow Cup after Aidan Nesbitts goal secured a 1-0 win at Parkhead. Picture: SNS

Scorers: Celtic U17 - Nesbitt (67)

A crowd of over 8,000 had taken in the game which was played in a hostile atmosphere with a heavy police presence required to calm things as they threatened to get out of hand just before half-time.

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After the game tens of seats were damaged as Rangers fans exited the stadium.

A jubilant Celtic Under-17 side celebrate with the City of Glasgow Cup after Aidan Nesbitts goal secured a 1-0 win at Parkhead. Picture: SNS

Ibrox youth coach Billy Kirkwood said afterwards: “What happens in the stands is nothing to do with us. Unfortunately that’s society at the moment. That’s the bigger picture and it’s not just Rangers and Celtic. I wish I had a magic wand to know how to combat it.

“There’s going to be a time when Rangers are going to play Celtic at first-team level and all I can say to that is, oh dear.”

Celtic won the competition for the first time in three years thanks to Aidan Nesbitt’s second-half goal.

The contest had started off just like old times on a smaller scale as both sets of fans, who were situated in the main stand, got noisily reacquainted with each other ahead of kick-off.

Rangers had a glimpse of goal early on and Ryan Hardie’s shot looked netbound until Celtic full-back Sam Wardrop popped up on the line to boot clear. Celtic’s first opening came in 16 minutes when Regan Hendry let fly from 25 yards, but he was denied by a post with Robby McCrorie in the Rangers goal well beaten.

As the atmosphere became uglier, police moved in to form a barrier between the fans, while the youngsters tried to play football despite fire-crackers and smoke bombs being let off.

The players seemed unable to settle and the game reached half-time with little threat made to either goal.

At the start of the second half, Rangers’ Jamie Brandon sliced a 20-yard effort well wide. Celtic responded through Ciaran Lafferty, whose effort was scooped into the arms of McCrorie.

The Ibrox shot-stopper excelled when Nesbitt’s driven cross was flicked goalward by Lafferty and McCrorie dived full length to push the ball away.

The goal that Celtic had been threatening came on 67 minutes when Nesbitt stayed calm after his first effort from 18 yards had been blocked and picked his spot in the Rangers net.

Two minutes later, Nesbitt slipped the ball past McCrorie, but David Brownlie popped up to clear.

As a game of football broke out, substitute Sam Jamieson almost drilled home a leveller from 25 yards but Wardrop slid in behind his goalkeeper Colin McCabe to clear.

Jamieson was again inches away with an injury-time effort from 20 yards that smacked back off the bar.

Celtic U17: McCabe, Wardrop, McIlduff, Hill, Breslin, McCart, Nesbitt (Caird 87), Thomson, Lafferty (Boyd 69), Hendry, Tierney (Miller 59)

Subs not used: Doohan, McLaren, McIntosh, Comrie.

Rangers U17: Robby McCrorie, Mossie, Ross McCrorie, Brownlie, Whiteside (Clark 58), Wilson, Brandon (White 53), Hamill, Hardie, Ogen, Ashmore (Jamieson 67)

Subs not used: McMinn, Burt, Bradley.

Referee: D Dickinson.

Attendance: 8,000