Date: 19th February 2007 at 5:53pm
Written by:

The two managers of their respective clubs give their opinions on what went right and wrong for their team during Saturday`s vital SPL encounter.

Jimmy Calderwood thought his team wasted good chances to score, the match stats below certainly point out that the home side had the most shots on and off target but its goals that count and Celtic took their few opportunities well.

Jimmy said ‘I thought we started quite well but on their first attack they scored. We tried to play offside but it did not work. We don’t need to try and play defence like that as we have so much pace that we can recover quickly.

Nakamura’s goal was very good and it set us back a bit but to be fair we fought back and the boys gave everything they could. I know we can play better but we just did not get the breaks. Celtic showed us a lot of respect by fielding a strong team but individual mistakes let us down. We were chasing the game in the second half but it was too little too late.

I don’t think we were out played and on another day we could have taken something from the game.’



Celts manager Strachan showed commitment to winning the league at the earliest time possible by playing a very strong side that contained many of the players who will no doubt start in their massive AC Milan clash on Tuesday night. The ex-Dons player insisted that playing a weakened team was never an option as he looks to secure the league in record time and the Pittodrie clash was still the most important encounter on his mind.

Strachan said: ‘I’m very happy to pick up a lot of points against Aberdeen this season as that goes a long way towards deciding where you’re going to be at the end of the season.’

He continued: ‘That was a good Aberdeen side and they always seem to be on the back of a good run of form when they play us. Yet we seem to do well.

I’m not about to start getting players match fit for Milan as my job is to win games in the league. I wasn’t going to play about with Aberdeen and bring players here to get a run-out as that’s not on. We came here to win the game and we’ve done that.’

He said: ‘When we had to fight and scrap and do the right things, we did that – and that includes Nakamura.”He’s meant to be light and some say if you tackle him he runs away but if people are going to make comments about my players then they should have a look at what we do.

I picked up a paper the other night as there was nothing on TV but I soon realised why I don’t read them.

Nakamura and Neil Lennon were fantastic, Paul Hartley and Jiri Jarosik did well against an Aberdeen side who are incredibly fit, fast and obviously enjoy playing against big teams.’



STATS

Aberdeen Celtic

POSSESSION

51% 49%

SHOTS ON TARGET

4

SHOTS OFF TARGET

4

CORNERS

4

FOULS CONCEDED

13

OFFSIDES

5

Aberdeen: Langfield, Hart, Anderson, Considine, Foster, Nicholson, Severin, Clark, Mackie, Miller, Lovell. Subs: Soutar, Dempsey, Touzani, Smith, Winter, Maguire, Daal.

Booked: Foster, Severin, Anderson 71. Goals: Mackie 90.

Celtic: Boruc, Wilson, Pressley, McManus Naylor, Hartley, Lennon, Jarosik, Nakamura, Vennegoor of Hesselink, Beattie. Subs: Brown, Telfer, Miller, Sno, Gravesen, McGeady, O’Dea.

Booked: McManus. Goals: Beattie 9, Nakamura 20.

Att: 16,711

Ref: C Thomson