Dundee 0
Celtic 1
League (Premier League)

0 - 1

League (Premier League)
Sunday, September 22nd, 2002
Dens Park
Attendance: 9,483
3:00 PM Kick-off

None. Henrik Larsson (18)

Team Managers
Jim Duffy
Martin O'Neill

Starting Eleven
12. Julian Speroni
16. Jonay Hernández
23. Tom Hutchinson
3. David Mackay
2. Barry Smith
6. Lee Wilkie
10. Giorgi Nemsadze
8. Gavin Rae
7. Fabian Caballero
17. Nacho Novo
9. Juan Sara
Rab Douglas .20
Joos Valgaeren .5
Bobo Baldé .6
Ulrik Laursen .16
Momo Sylla .3
Paul Lambert .14
Neil Lennon .18
Stilian Petrov .19
Steve Guppy .30
Henrik Larsson .7
Chris Sutton .9

1. Jamie Langfield
19. Lee Mair
26. Garry Brady
25. Steve Lovell
15. Steven Milne
Jonathan Gould .1
Stephen Crainey .40
John Hartson .10
Shaun Maloney .29
David Fernández .12

Steve Lovell for Tom Hutchinson (79)
John Hartson for Chris Sutton (74)
Stephen Crainey for Momo Sylla (80)

Gavin Rae (36)
Neil Lennon (90)

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

John Underhill (Referee)
Stuart Macaulay & Neil Brand (Assistants)
Eric Martindale (Fourth Official)

Match Report

Dundee's four game unbeaten run came to an end thanks to a goal of exquisite quality from Henrik Larsson, but the Dark Blues turned in a fighting display which perhaps deserved some reward. Dundee had a fair amount of possession and played some lovely football, with the returning Giorgi Nemsadze prominent, but there was little cutting edge and, despite the match finishing with Celtic hemmed in , and happy to hear the final whistle, if truth be told Dundee never looked like scoring.

One person who missed out on a visit to Dens was Scotland boss Berti Vogts, and he missed a defensive masterclass from Lee Wilkie. The 22 year old was the choice of match sponsors and BBC as man of the match and Jim Duffy described his performance by saying "Lee was brilliant

Celtic's winner came in 18 minutes and saw Larsson pick up the ball wide on the right drift past Hutchinson and Hernandez and feed Guppy wide on the left, as the Englishman advanced towards goal most assumed that Larsson had headed into the box as most strikers would, but the Swede had taken up space outside the area and a fine cut back found him with space 22 yards out, from where he executed the most sublime chip into the postage stamp corner of the net. It was a poor goal from a defensive point of view, with the Celtic hitman given room to create the opening, but wonderfully executed by a master craftsman all the same.

Dundee had opened brightly and the goal was somewhat against the run of play but the visitors began to turn it on and Petrov had a golden chance as he wriggled free and found himself one on one with Speroni only to curl his ten yard shot wide. Rab Douglas did well to clutch a Novo cross shot at the other end with Sara lurking. Gavin Rae picked up a booking as Larsson went down after an innocuous challenge and the Swede then came close with a header from Sylla's cross, before Nacho Novo picked up a loose ball and rammed a shot into the side netting as the interval

approached. Dundee were again looking bright and two free kicks from good position in the five minutes surrounding the hour mark should have provided Rab with more hard work.

In between these moments came a truly magnificent one handed save by Speroni after Sutton had got on the end of a superb cross from Guppy, as Celtic began to dominate.

With 20 minutes remaining, the Argentinian was left stranded by a chipped shot from Petrov but the ball came off the underside of the bar and Speroni clutched the rebound gratefully. Eleven minutes from the end, there was a surprise when Tom Hutchinson was the man to make way for Steve Lovell as Dundee went to a 3-3-4 formation, pouring forward in numbers.

The nearest they came to cancelling Celtic's lead was when Caballero embarked on a magnificent run and shot which had Douglas beaten and the home support on their feet, only for it to graze the junction of post and bar.

It would have been a magnificent goal, but on this occasion the TV audience had to make do with just the one contender for goal of the season.

Match report written by Dundee Matchday Programme

Squad Statistics (as at September 22nd, 2002)

2002-03 All Time
Julian Speroni (GK)23 8 - 29 -
Jonay Hernández23 8 - 8 -
Tom Hutchinson20 4 - 4 -
David Mackay21 8 - 261
Barry Smith28 8 - 2751
Lee Wilkie22 8 - 561
Giorgi Nemsadze30 7 - 593
Gavin Rae24 8219220
Fabian Caballero24 826418
Nacho Novo23 7373
Juan Sara25 8 - 7830
Steve Lovell (sub)21 5151

League Table (as at September 22nd, 2002)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

On the basis of results, I suppose that four points out of six from our last two games is a satisfactory total, especially given the very contrasting performances.

At home to Livingston, we were outstanding for the whole ninety minutes with our overall play excellent and the single goal victory barely did justice to how well we played.

The same unfortunately could not be said concerning last weekend's match at Firhill where, it has to be conceded, that we got the breaks in getting a point from Partick after not playing particularly well.

Having said that, there was plenty of effort and I suppose had we been offered a win and a draw prior to a home and an away fixture, we would have been happy enough to accept that return Especially, given that in both games, we had to come from behind, demonstrating the great attitude being shown by the players and hopefully, that is something that we will continue to do on a regular basis.

Those fighting qualities will be extremely important for this afternoon given the calibre of this afternoon's opponents, Celtic.

Not only will we have to show the same resolve as was in evidence against Thistle, but additionally it will need the same quality of football that was on offer against Livingston to give us the possibility of taking something from a very difficult fixture which, if anything more demanding than ever as Martin O'Neill's men seek to get back in to top gear after, only by their very high standards, a brief spell when they haven't quite been firing on all cylinders.