Shamik Das


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Nak the knife

"I'm king of the world!"    Head in his hands

Glasgow Celtic 1-0 Manchester United

A stunning free-kick from Shunsuke Nakamura took Celtic through to the knockout stages of the Champions League for the first time in their history last night.

Nakamura's 25-yard strike - ten minutes from time - curled into the top left-hand corner of Edwin Van der Sar's goal, creeping into the net beyond the Dutchman's despairing dive.

United will be kicking themselves at not securing at least a point, however - Louis Saha missing two gilt-edged chances in the last five minutes.

Firstly, Saha shot straight at Hoops keeper Artur Boruc when clean through. Then, having been awarded a disputed penalty in the final minute of the game, Boruc again denied the Frenchman - pulling off a brilliant save down to his right.

Why Messieurs Rooney, Ronaldo or Giggs didn't take the kick is anyone's guess. One thing's for sure - Saha won't be entrusted with spot-kick duties anytime soon.

Nakamura's winner (below right) was very similar to his goal at Old Trafford (below left) in the reverse fixture two months ago.

    

A draw against Benfica in United's final match will see them join Celtic in the next round. Oh well, at least there's the Ashes to worry about until then, now only 24 hours away ...

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