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banner Tuesday, 8 January, 2002, 22:16 GMT
Celtic crush ailing Alloa
Morten Wieghorst heads home Celtic's second goal
Alloa 0-5 Celtic

Celtic booked a Scottish Cup fourth round tie with Kilmarnock after a makeshift side disposed of Alloa Athletic with ease.

The cup holders were always in control and when defender Bobo Balde fired home a 19th minute shot there was never any question of an upset.

Morten Wieghorst marked his second start since being struck down by brain virus Guillain Barre Syndrome with a goal.

Youngster Shaun Malloney added a third before Bobby Petta and Momo Sylla wrapped things up for Martin O'Neill's men.

Celtic made eight changes from the side that beat Motherwell last week to go 13 points clear of Rangers in the SPL.

Robert Douglas, Joos Valgaeren, Henrik Larsson, Alan Thompson, John Hartson, Paul Lambert, Neil Lennon and Johan Mjallby were all rested for the rearranged game at Falkirk's Brockville.

Wieghorst celebrates his goal
Alongside Wieghorst came Jonathan Gould, Olivier Tebily, Tom Boyd, Sylla, Maloney, Steve Guppy and Petta.

Alloa gave the visitors an early scare after just four minutes when James Fisher floated an inviting free-kick into the Celtic box and Mark Cowan got above Tebily to head just wide.

Stilian Petrov almost opened the scoring from a 17th minute free-kick with an awkward right-foot shot which squirmed through the grasp of Derek Soutar but Craig Valentine cleared.

Celtic took the lead two minutes later through Balde who did not quite catch his 25-yard shot right but it seemed to take a strange bounce in front of Soutar and sneaked past the keeper's despairing dive.

Sylla, playing in an unaccustomed striking role, could have doubled Celtic's lead in the 24th minute but, with just the goalkeeper to beat, he pulled his left-foot shot well wide.

Celtic threatened to run riot and Soutar needed to make four good saves from Balde, Petta, Maloney and Tebily to keep his side in the game.

Soutar was helpless in the 36th minute as Tebily rose to meet Petta's cross but he breathed a sigh of relief to see the defender head just past the post.

The Alloa hero again made a great point-blank save to thwart Sylla a minute later although the former St Johnstone favourite should have done much better.

However, Wieghorst had something special to celebrate in the 42nd minute when he headed Celtic's second from Maloney's cross.

O'Neill brought on youngster Jamie Smith at the break for Petrov.

Sylla scored his first goal for Celtic
And it took just 11 minutes of the second period for Celtic to kill the tie off through Maloney, who swept home Smith's cross.

Alloa defender Watson was worryingly stretchered off in the 62nd minute with what appeared to be a bad leg injury after being clattered by Balde and Richard Walker came on.

Petta tried to get in on the act in the 68th minute with a fierce right-foot shot which flashed just past the upright while Soutar again made a good stop to deny Sylla.

But the Dutch winger did get his name on the scoresheet in the 75th minute with a determined burst into the area and a cool finish past the on-rushing Soutar.

Celtic rubbed salt into the wounds with eight minutes remaining as Sylla fired home at the second attempt from Guppy's corner for his first goal for the Parkhead club.

Alloa: Soutar, Valentine, Watson, Thomson, Cowan, Hamilton, Christie, Fisher, Whalen, Hutchison, Little. Subs: Curran, Gareth Evans, Walker, Knox, Jim Evans.

Celtic: Gould, Boyd, Balde, Tebily, Guppy, McNamara, Wieghorst, Petrov, Petta, Maloney, Sylla. Subs: Lambert, Healy, Moravcik, Smith, Douglas.

Referee: M McCurry

BBC Scotland's David Begg
"Five different scorers made it Alloa nil, Celtic five"
Celtic manager Martin O'Neill
"Delighted with a lot of individual performances"
Celtic's Danish midfielder Morten Weighorst
"To get the goal was the icing on the cake"
Links to more Scottish Cup stories are at the foot of the page.


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