Celtic 2, Hibs 2, SPL, Saturday, September 1, 2012
HIBS fought back twice at Celtic Park to earn a valubale point in Glasgow against Neil Lennon’s champions. The visitors had to withstand a bombardment in the first half but they only had a strike from Michael Lustig to show for their efforts – with striker Gary Hooper twice hitting the woodwork.
But Hibs found their feet after the break as Pat Fenlon’s team showed they could handle the pressure. Tim Clancy scored an equaliser as he punished an error by Lustig to tap in. Lustig then forced a goal via Hibs’ James McPake after goalkeeper Ben Williams spilled the ball. But then Paul Cairney showed great skill to earn a draw.
Fenlon’s players were made to pay for a big mistake after 11 minutes had been played. McPake made reacted well to deny Victor Wanyama a tap-in from a Filip Twardzik corner, but no-one in the visiting defence could prevent Lustig’s thunderous effort from 12 yards from Twardzik’s subsequent corner flying into the net.
Celtic came within inches of a second when Hooper picked up possession on the edge of the box only for his powerful toe-poke to come off the underside of the crossbar. Williams then reacted brilliantly to push away a powerful Wanyama drive from ten yards. James Forrest then fired on from outside the penalty area but his shot flew wide of the right-hand post.
Hibs briefly threatened when McPake’s header across goal allowed Leigh Griffiths to try an adventurous overhead-kick, which flew well off-target.
Within two minutes of the restart, a Griffiths free-kick from the right was knocked against the post by Eoin Doyle. But the equaliser did arrive moments later after woeful defending by Lustig.
The Swede attempted to guide the ball back to Fraser Forster but failed miserably to do so, allowing Clancy to nip in, round the keeper and tap in to an empty net.
Williams spilled a long-range Twardzik free kick, allowing Lustig to score but the home crowd were stunned again when Cairney showed superb skill to get past two challenges and then slot the ball past Forster.
Celtic: Forster, Wilson, Lustig, Matthews, Izaguirre, McCourt (Commons 74), Wanyama (Irvine 46), Forrest, Twardzik, Watt, Hooper. Subs not used: Fraser, Chalmers, McGregor, Slane, Zaluska.
Hibs: Williams, Clancy, Maybury, McPake, Hanlon, Claros, Cairney, Deegan (Stevenson 87), Wotherspoon (Sproule 87), Griffiths, Doyle. Subs not used: Antell, Caldwell, Handling, Stanton, Kuqi.
Ref: I Brines.