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Thursday, September 30, 1999 Published at 23:12 GMT 00:12 UK

Sport: Football

Larsson makes sure for Celtic

Coach John Barnes said it was a hard, hot fight in Tel Aviv

Hapoel Tel-Aviv 0-1 Celtic (agg 0-3)

Keeper Jonathan Gould saved a penalty for Celtic before striker Henrik Larsson added to his prolific goal tally to make sure of the Scottish side's safe passage into the second round of the Uefa Cup.

Celtic coach John Barnes: Pleased with his players
Celtic may have had a two goal first-leg lead but were given a scare in Tel Aviv when the home side were awarded a 60th minute penalty.

Substitute Ronen Harazi could have set up a worrying final 30 minutes for Celtic but his spot-kick was well saved by Gould.

Three minutes later Larsson struck with a fierce 18-yard drive to give Celtic a comfortable three goal aggregate lead.

[ image: Larsson also scored in the first leg]
Larsson also scored in the first leg
Celtic had decided to take no chances with their precious advantage and began cautiously in Tel Aviv.

Coach John Barnes switched to a defensive 3-5-2 formation, with Stilian Petrov playing an unfamiliar left wing-back role, and issued strict instructions for his players to soak up as much pressure as possible.

The Scots had the midfield sewn up tight and for all their possession Hapoel showed little cutting edge.

The frustration began to show and Ilan Bakhar was booked for diving when he tried to pursuade the referee to give a penalty for the challenge from Vidar Riseth.

It was Celtic who created the clearest openings - Alan Stubbs forcing a fine low save from Shavit Elimelech with his 13th minute free-kick.

And Larsson had several chances to make the tie safe, the best with a volley which Elimelech somehow managed to push onto the underside of the bar.

Finger-tip save

Celtic nearly handed the Israelis their sought-after goal after 56 minutes when defender Olivier Tebily appeared to lose his bearings on the edge of his own six-yard box and sent a firm header goalwards.

Only a stunning reaction save from Gould kept the two-goal lead intact.

On the hour mark Gould was called on once again when Hapoel won a penalty for Paul Lambert's adjudged trip on Rupnik

But the striker hit his shot too close to Gould who clutched the ball to his chest.

It was to prove a decisive moment as just three minutes later Celtic were ahead, substitute Morten Wieghorst cutting in with purpose from the left and feeding Larsson who scored with a powerful drive from the edge of the area.

Celtic were at last able to relax and Viduka made way for Eyal Berkovic to get his hoped-for introduction in his native Israel.

Hapoel Tel-Aviv: Elimelech, Cohen, Gershon, Ohaion, Antebi, Rupnik, Racunica, Bakhar, Pisont, Toema, Cimirotic.
Subs: Rahmin, Elkayam, Balali, Hillel, Harazi, Afek, Kbada.
Celtic: Gould, Stubbs, Tebily, Riseth, Petrov, McNamara, Burley, Lambert, Viduka, Moravcik, Larsson.
Subs: Kharine, Petta, Burchill, Blinker, Mjallby, Berkovic, Wieghorst.
Referee: J Arceo (Spain)

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