Celebration at Fir Park

Last updated : 10 September 2002 By Firparkcorner

Where's Shaun?
Few of the home support expected it to turn out like this. Even Terry Butcher in his programme notes struck a doleful and gloomy note explaining that the probable outcome would be a loss against the ‘might’ of the champions.

But he had a different speech reserved for the dressing room. It was clear from the outset that our tactics were to press the opposition, to scrap and fight to gain possession, to knock them off their comfort zone and then, when the ball was won, to use the young, skilful talent to attack.

Happy boy
In two minutes Lambert needed attention after a crunching tackle from Adams. The crowd sensed that the team were in attacking mode when three times in the first fifteen minutes we had success up the left wing with Hammell, Pearson and McFadden winning the ball, beating defenders and sending tempting crosses into the box.

Celtic had their chances in the first half. Three clear opportunities fell to Larsson but his touch was poor.

We reached the break in what seemed like no time. The pace of the game was breathtaking and the talk on the terraces was that the second half would see a few sets if tired legs.

Sengewald (making his debut) and Partridge served well in the centre of defence with Hammell and Corrigan flanking them. Pearson, Leitch, Lasley and Adams worked tirelessly in the middle of the park and Lehmann and McFadden ran miles pressing defenders, chasing long balls and in Faddy’s case threatening the Celtic defenders with his twisting, jinking runs at every opportunity.

The national manager and his assistant could not fail to be impressed with McFadden. He had a superb game and was presented with the MoM award. Pearson took a knock shortly before the break and despite trying to run off the ‘dead leg at the break, was substituted by Ramsay five minutes into the half. Scott Leitch also took a knock and he was replaced by Fagan with twenty minutes to go.

The visitors were still making most of the chances but our defence stood up. With twent y minutes remaining we got the breakthrough.

Well done
McFadden started it it and set up Hammell for a cross. Young Fagan headed down and the ball beat Douglas. He scored in front of the Cooper Stand and the ground exploded.

The ‘Well fans could hardly believe what took place a few minutes later. Faddy flew into the box and went down after a clumsy challenge from Laursen. After what seemed like an age, Willie Young pointed to the spot! Faddy could not get his hands on the ball quickly enough and he stroked home with confidence.

Celtic got a late consolation but we held on for the win.

Wonderful, joyful scenes unfolded on the pitch after the final whistle. Many fans waited to cheer the heroes off the park. Three point against Celtic at Fir Park – it does not get a lot better than this! I’m away to celebrate.