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Last Updated: Wednesday, 27 August, 2003, 20:31 GMT 21:31 UK
Sutton eases Celtic through
Goalscorer Chris Sutton celebrates with Henrik Larsson
Celtic 1-0 MTK Hungaria (Celtic win 5-0 on aggregate)

Chris Sutton blew away his frustration at sitting on the sidelines for five league matches as Celtic completed their expected passage to the Champions League group stages.

An early goal from the striker, banned domestically for two red cards and remarks made about Dunfermline Athletic last season, was one of the few highlights at Celtic Park as MTK Hungaria were eased aside.

Celtic already knew that, barring accidents, they would clinch their place in the lucrative group stages of the Champions League.

Martin O'Neill's side, Uefa Cup finalists last season, hammered the Hungarian champions 4-0 on their own patch a fortnight ago.

O'Neill made five changes from the side that failed to impress in defeating Partick Thistle on Saturday.

Swedish international goalkeeper Magnus Hedman was given another opportunity to make the jersey his own by moving Robert Douglas to the bench.

Sutton, out of the opening five league games through suspension, also came into the starting 11 to partner Henrik Larsson.

Didier Agathe returned from injury and also in came Liam Miller and transfer-listed Stephen Crainey, while John Hartson was on the bench.

The first great chance fell to Sutton in the 10th minute, when Alan Thompson whipped in another cross, but the striker failed to hit the target with his header from close range.

Sutton made amends with his head just three minutes later from a more difficult chance.

John Hartson powers past the Hungaria defence
John Hartson returned to first-team action after injury
He pulled away from his marker and steered Agathe's cross past the despairing dive of Zoltn and into the bottom corner from eight yards out.

Miller was denied by the feet of Zoltn after the young midfielder exchanged passes with Henrik Larsson.

O'Neill knew the tie was dead and buried and decided to rest Balde and Petrov by bringing on the fresh legs of youngster John Kennedy and forgotten man Bobby Petta.

Hungaria's one chance of glory fell to Torghelle Sandor just three minutes after the restart, but he sliced his right-foot shot wide of Hedman's left post from nine yards.

It seemed only a matter of time before Larsson got his name on the scoresheet, but Zoltn did well to save his powerful free-kick from just outside the box.

O'Neill could afford to take off the Swede in the 58th minute and on came Hartson for his first appearance since the victory at Rangers back in April.

The Welsh international was given a hero's welcome on his return from injury by the Celtic supporters, but the Welshman wildly sliced his first good opportunity wide of the mark.


Celtic: Hedman, Balde, Crainey, Varga, Thompson, Lambert, Agathe, Petrov, Larsson, Sutton, Miller.
Subs: Douglas, Sylla, McNamara, Hartson, Petta, Maloney, Kennedy.

MTK Hungaria: Vegh Zoltn, Molnr Zoltn, Adam, Roland, Gabord, Goran, Gabor, Istvan, Sandor, Bela, Zijkos.
Subs: Lavente, Attila, Peter, Rednic, Ottu, Oliver, Welton Silva.

Referee: Wolfgang Stark (Germany)








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