Scott McDonald gets a shot at goal under pressure from Tomas Rincon
By Keir Murray
Celtic look highly unlikely to progress in the Europa League after they endured a frustrating goalless draw in Hamburg, which leaves them bottom of the table.
Barry Robson blasted an early effort over the bar from 16 yards and twice striker Scott McDonald was denied by Hamburg's alert goalkeeper Frank Rost.
Lukasz Zaluska saved well from Marcus Berg and surpassed that when he tipped a David Rozehnal header over the bar.
Celtic must win their final two games and hope Hamburg lose theirs.
With less than 90 seconds on the clock Berg fired a shot at Zaluska but Artur Boruc's replacement did well to block with his feet.
Incredibly, this was Celtic's second scare of the match, Gary Caldwell blocking acrobatically a Jonathan Pitroipa volley from six yards in the first minute.
With Celtic desperately needing a win, they drew breath and hit back instantly down the left, the ball falling kindly for Robson who whacked a left-foot shot over the bar from 16 yards as the German defence rushed at him.
A bursting run from Samaras had the Hamburg defence retreating as the match continued apace.
The Greek's pass to McDonald was perfectly weighted and from inside the box the Australian fired a low shot too close to Hamburg's goalkeeper Rost, who got down well to save.
As the game swung to the other end of the pitch Caldwell picked up a yellow card when a delicious flick by Jose Ze Roberto wrong-footed the Celtic captain for the night.
Thankfully for Celtic, the Brazilian swept his free-kick wide.
Marcell Jansen's low shot in the 20th minute was parried by Zaluska and slack passing by Celtic in central areas threatened to undo their Europa League chances as first Pitroipa and then Jansen again kept Tony Mowbray's side pinned back.
McDonald, dropped by Australian coach Pim Verbeek for their match against Oman, was presented with another chance when a clever Aiden McGeady pass from the touchline saw him racing in from the left-hand side of the box.
Like his first opportunity, McDonald's shot had power but was directed straight at Rost.
In a scrappy beginning to the second half, Hamburg came close to taking the lead when Joris Mathijsen leapt to meet a free-kick and the ball bounced off his back and on to the top of Zaluska's crossbar.
Landry N'Guemo had the 2,500 Celtic fans peering through their fingers in terror when his crossfield pass was cut out by the electric Eljero Elia, who sped forward and cracked a shot at goal.
Zaluska parried into the path of Pitroipa, who was prevented from shooting from close range by a fabulous intervention by Caldwell.
As the hour mark approached and with Hamburg pressing Celtic deep into their own half, Mowbray sent on Marc-Antoine Fortune and Lee Naylor, McGeady and McDonald making way.
It was a brave move by Celtic, Naylor taking over Danny Fox's left-back role as his team-mate moved into the left side of midfield vacated by McGeady.
N'Guemo set Samaras racing through on goal with a delightful ball over the top of the Hamburg defence, but with only Rost to beat the Greek shot feebly and the game remained goalless.
With Hapoel Tel-Aviv leading Rapid Vienna, a goal for Celtic was essential as stalemate at Hamburg's Nordbank Arena would leave the Germans needing just one more point to make it impossible for the Scots to progress.
Yet the Bundesliga side continued to apply the pressure and, when Rozehnal escaped Glenn Loovens at a Ze Roberto free-kick, only a superb save by the impressive Zaluska prevented the Hamburg defender heading the opener.
Celtic made a late surge as Hamburg appeared to tire, with final substitute Niall McGinn offering the visitors fresh legs in midfield.
But as the match reached its finale, there was a feeling that the missed chances by Robson and McDonald would haunt the Scots.
The final whistle not only ended the 90 minutes but most likely Celtic's chances of advancing from Group C.
Live text and stats
Thursday, 5 November 2009
07 Jansen (Trochowski 83)
08 Ze Roberto
14 Jarolim yellow card
21 Pitroipa (Torun 87)
05 Caldwell yellow card
19 Robson yellow card (McGinn 75)
46 McGeady (Fortune 59)
07 McDonald (Naylor 59)
09 Samaras yellow card
Ref: Carlos Velasco CarballoAtt: 45,037
Attempts on target
Attempts off target
90:00+3:32 The game is over, as the referee blows his whistle.
90:00+3:07 Piotr Trochowski produces a right-footed shot from outside the penalty box and misses right.
90:00+2:11 David Jarolim has an effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the right of the target.
88:00 Piotr Trochowski produces a cross, Lukasz Zaluska makes a save.
86:18 Substitution Tunay Torun comes on in place of Jonathan Pitroipa.
86:18 The ball is delivered by Dennis Aogo, Shot by Piotr Trochowski from outside the area goes high over the crossbar.
85:26 The ball is delivered by Eljero Elia, save by Lukasz Zaluska.
84:53 Georgios Samaras is adjudged to have handled the ball. Free kick taken by David Jarolim.
84:25 Piotr Trochowski delivers the ball.
83:14 The ball is swung over by Niall McGinn, blocked by Georgios Samaras.
82:20 Lukasz Zaluska takes the direct free kick.
82:20 Substitution (Hamburg) makes a substitution, with Piotr Trochowski coming on for Marcell Jansen.
82:20 The referee blows for offside.
80:11 Effort on goal by Marcus Berg from just inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.
78:52 Corner taken left-footed by Eljero Elia from the right by-line, clearance made by Daniel Fox.
77:25 Centre by Georgios Samaras.
76:40 Inswinging corner taken by Daniel Fox from the right by-line, save made by Frank Rost.
74:37 Substitution Niall McGinn replaces Barry Robson.
Correction - 72:09 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Jose Ze Roberto from the right by-line, David Rozehnal takes a shot. Save made by Lukasz
Zaluska. Inswinging corner taken by Dennis Aogo from the left by-line, clearance by Glenn Loovens.
72:09 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Jose Ze Roberto from the right by-line, David Rozehnal takes a shot. Save made by Lukasz
70:25 Corner from right by-line taken by Jose Ze Roberto.
69:10 Jose Ze Roberto takes a short corner.
68:57 Eljero Elia delivers the ball.
67:06 Unfair challenge on Landry N'Guemo by David Jarolim results in a free kick. Marc Crosas takes the direct free kick.
67:02 Lee Naylor delivers the ball.
65:54 Booking Barry Robson receives a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.
65:49 Booking The referee cautions David Jarolim for unsporting behaviour.
64:36 Frank Rost takes the free kick.
64:36 Booking Georgios Samaras goes into the book for unsporting behaviour.
64:20 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on David Rozehnal by Georgios Samaras.
63:48 Jose Ze Roberto concedes a free kick for a foul on Marc Crosas. Lukasz Zaluska takes the free kick.
63:20 Georgios Samaras takes a shot. Save by Frank Rost.
61:57 The referee blows for offside. Lukasz Zaluska takes the direct free kick.
60:03 Jose Ze Roberto delivers the ball.
59:46 Eljero Elia produces a cross, Joris Mathijsen gets a block in.
58:57 Outswinging corner taken by Dennis Aogo from the right by-line, Gary Caldwell makes a clearance. A cross is delivered by Dennis
Aogo, Glenn Loovens makes a clearance.
58:13 Substitution Aiden McGeady goes off and Marc-Antoine Fortune comes on.
58:13 Substitution (Celtic) makes a substitution, with Lee Naylor coming on for Scott McDonald.
56:30 Shot by Eljero Elia from deep inside the penalty area misses to the left of the target.
55:26 David Jarolim challenges Barry Robson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed by Gary Caldwell.
54:42 Unfair challenge on Landry N'Guemo by David Jarolim results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Gary Caldwell.
53:51 Inswinging corner taken by Eljero Elia.
52:52 The ball is sent over by Marcus Berg.
52:01 Eljero Elia takes a shot. Save by Lukasz Zaluska. Short corner worked by Eljero Elia.
51:08 Eljero Elia delivers the ball, clearance by Glenn Loovens.
48:47 Marcell Jansen challenges Barry Robson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Andreas Hinkel.
47:22 Unfair challenge on David Rozehnal by Landry N'Guemo results in a free kick. Cross/shot by Joris Mathijsen.
45:01 The referee gets the second half underway.
45:00+0:13 The ref blows to signal half-time.
44:15 Landry N'Guemo gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Jarolim. Dennis Aogo takes the free kick.
40:33 Georgios Samaras concedes a free kick for a foul on Tomas Rincon. Direct free kick taken by Tomas Rincon.
40:09 Georgios Samaras takes a shot. Save made by Frank Rost.
36:49 Free kick awarded for a foul by Glenn Loovens on Jose Ze Roberto. Jose Ze Roberto has an effort direct from the free kick.
36:33 A cross is delivered by Eljero Elia, Glenn Loovens makes a clearance.
Correction - 31:56 Scott McDonald takes a shot. Frank Rost makes a save.
31:56 Scott McDonald takes a shot. Save made by Frank Rost.
30:16 David Rozehnal sends in a cross.
29:38 Foul by Marc Crosas on David Jarolim, free kick awarded. The free kick is delivered left-footed by Dennis Aogo from left channel,
clearance by Glenn Loovens.
27:46 Marcell Jansen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Andreas Hinkel. Gary Caldwell restarts play with the free
26:18 Corner from the right by-line taken by Eljero Elia, Header from deep inside the penalty area by Joris Mathijsen goes harmlessly
over the crossbar.
25:42 Eljero Elia produces a cross, save by Lukasz Zaluska.
23:45 Shot from just outside the box by Marcell Jansen misses to the left of the goal.
21:20 Shot on goal by Jonathan Pitroipa from just inside the area clears the crossbar.
20:39 Unfair challenge on Landry N'Guemo by David Jarolim results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Gary Caldwell.
19:19 Marcell Jansen takes a shot. Save by Lukasz Zaluska. Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Daniel Fox by Joris Mathijsen.
Direct free kick taken by Lukasz Zaluska.
17:48 Jose Ze Roberto has a direct shot on goal from the free kick.
17:48 Booking Booking for Gary Caldwell.
17:42 Gary Caldwell handles the ball and concedes a free kick.
16:32 Shot from 12 yards from Scott McDonald. Save by Frank Rost. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Marc Crosas, Headed effort
from inside the penalty area by Georgios Samaras misses to the right of the target.
15:40 Barry Robson fouled by David Jarolim, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Glenn Loovens.
15:00 Jose Ze Roberto fouled by Landry N'Guemo, the ref awards a free kick. David Jarolim takes the direct free kick.
14:30 Free kick awarded for a foul by Scott McDonald on David Rozehnal. Free kick taken by Tomas Rincon.
14:18 Foul by Barry Robson on Eljero Elia, free kick awarded. Joris Mathijsen takes the free kick.
13:51 Free kick awarded for a foul by Marcell Jansen on Gary Caldwell. Gary Caldwell restarts play with the free kick.
12:11 Jose Ze Roberto takes a shot. Glenn Loovens gets a block in.
9:47 Scott McDonald concedes a free kick for a foul on Jose Ze Roberto. David Rozehnal takes the free kick.
9:13 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Barry Robson by Marcell Jansen. Direct free kick taken by Gary Caldwell.
8:00 Unfair challenge on Landry N'Guemo by David Jarolim results in a free kick. Andreas Hinkel crosses the ball in from the free
kick, David Rozehnal manages to make a clearance.
7:15 Tomas Rincon concedes a free kick for a foul on Aiden McGeady. Free kick crossed by Marc Crosas, save by Frank Rost.
Correction - 5:40 Centre by Andreas Hinkel, clearance by David Rozehnal.
5:40 The ball is swung over by Andreas Hinkel, clearance by Jose Ze Roberto.
5:08 David Jarolim gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Scott McDonald. Daniel Fox takes the direct free kick.
Correction - 3:25 Cross/shot by Barry Robson, David Rozehnal gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Scott McDonald.
3:25 Cross/shot by Barry Robson, David Rozehnal gets a block in. Corner from left by-line taken by Daniel Fox.
3:01 Landry N'Guemo produces a cross, clearance made by Dennis Aogo.
2:44 David Jarolim fouled by Daniel Fox, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by David Jarolim.
1:24 Corner taken by Dennis Aogo. Marcus Berg takes a shot. Lukasz Zaluska makes a save. Dennis Aogo decides to take the corner
0:47 Inswinging corner from left by-line taken by Dennis Aogo to centre.
0:00 The referee starts the match.
Live text and data provided by The Press Association.
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