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The BBC's Roddy Forsyth
"But Celtic not Rangers have cause to rue the slippage of two points"
 real 28k

Monday, 27 December, 1999, 15:16 GMT
Rangers maintain their grip

Dodds celebrates his 27th minute equaliser


Celtic 1-1 Rangers

Honours were even in the last Old Firm derby of the century as Rangers and Celtic shared the points in a fiercely-fought 1-1 draw at Parkhead.

Mark Viduka opened the scoring for Celtic with his 19th goal of the season but Rangers Billy Dodds marked his Old Firm debut clash with a valuable equaliser.

Though the teams could not be separated on the day, the result leaves Rangers on top of the Scottish Premier League with a four-point lead on Celtic going into the new millennium.


Match facts
8 mins: Viduka hits the bar
18 mins: Viduka opens the scoring for Celtic
24 mins: Moravcik's half-volley hits the bar
27 mins: Dodds fires the equaliser
67 mins: Moravcik's header hit the bar
70 mins: Stubbs clears Wallace's shot from the line

The match lived up to its historic billing and contained all the essential elements of a classic Glasgow derby; excitement, controversy, passion, bite and goals.

The arch enemies matched each other for commitment and possession but it was Celtic who looked the more threatening and will have been most unhappy with a draw.

They played some wonderfully attacking football and hit the woodwork three times as they tried everything to end the 20th century with an Old Firm triumph to savour.

Viduka hit the post after just eight minutes, skipper Paul Lambert setting him up with a clever backheel.

Wooden luck

And the Bhoys were denied by the woodwork a second time before the interval when Lubomir Moravcik's half-volley rocked the crossbar.

Lambert led by brave-hearted example, throwing himself into tackle after tackle, winning the ball for Eyal Berkovic or Lubomir Moravcik to apply their creative touch.

It was that combination which produced the opening goal for Celtic.

Moravcik released Berkovic who slid the ball neatly into the path of Viduka.

One touch took it past Craig Moore, before Viduka clipped a 20-yard right-to-left shot into the bottom corner.

It was Viduka's 19th goal of the season and one which allows him to boast a strike against every Scottish Premier League side this season.

Rangers were unruffled by the setback, which they might have expected given Celtic's prolific goalscoring record - their 53 goals making them the top-scoring club in the British leagues.

Weak spot

Dodds had been left looking isolated for much of the first half but he made the most of the opening when it was finally presented to him.

Right-back Tony Vidmar, spotting him drifting away from his marker Olivier Tebily, played a looping ball into space on the edge of the box.

Dodds was swiftly onto it, taking one touch before turning to rifle a first-time shot past Jonathan Gould which took a small but significant deflection off the outstretched leg of defender Alan Stubbs.

Until Dodds's 27th minute equaliser, Celtic had seemed to have the measure of their rivals, victors in the last three Old Firm encounters.

Waiting game

But as in the last meeting - when Celtic led 2-1 but ended up losing 4-2 - Rangers patience and refusal to panic slowly began to tell.

Within two minutes of the re-start Rangers had two fine chances to take the lead, Dodds volleying just wide after out-witting Riseth and then arriving a milli-second too late to tap in Wallace's cross.

Fortune again conspired against Celtic in the 65th minute when Moravcik's header clattered against the bar.

But moments later Barnes' men were lucky to escape going behind when Albertz rounded Gould to leave Wallace with an open goal but his shot was cleared of the open goal-line by Stubbs.

While Rangers appeared happy to settle for only their second draw of the season, Celtic were desperate to claim the full three points from the old rivals.

With 18 minutes to go Barnes brought on Regi Blinker Rangers for Petrov and within seconds he almost helped his side edge ahead, his deep cross forcing Charbonnier to pat the ball away from the advancing Viduka.

Ian Wright made an appearance for the final seven minutes, but it was in vain as Rangers held off the Celtic challenge to end the century on top.

Teams:

Celtic: Gould, McNamara, Petrov, Mjallby, Stubbs, Tebily, Riseth, Lambert, Berkovic, Viduka, Moravcik. Subs: Kerr, Burchill, Wright, Blinker, Boyd.

Rangers: Charbonnier, Moore, Amoruso, Numan, Ferguson, Van Bronckhorst, Wallace, Albertz, Reyna, Vidmar, Dodds. Subs: Myhre, Kanchelskis, Amato, McCann, Nicholson.

Referee: Hugh Dallas (Scotland)

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See also:
18 Dec 99 |  Scottish Premier
Rangers blast back to form
22 Dec 99 |  Scottish Premier
Albertz keeps Rangers in front
11 Dec 99 |  Scottish Premier
Albertz rocket sinks Kille
11 Dec 99 |  Scottish Premier
Celtic come of age
18 Dec 99 |  Scottish Premier
Celtic turn on the style
27 Dec 99 |  Scottish Premier
Dallas centre stage for Parkhead drama
28 Nov 99 |  Scottish Premier
Celtic blow big chance
21 Nov 99 |  Scottish Premier
Albertz at his fiercest
Links to other Scottish Premier stories are at the foot of the page.