Cluj two good for Celtic
PSV Eindhoven are monitoring Karim Rekik’s situation at
Manchester City as they open their doors to a possible loan
The 18-year-old defender moved to the Etihad Stadium from
Feyenoord in the summer of 2011 and has spent the past couple of
seasons continuing his development.
He has had loan stints with Portsmouth and Blackburn Rovers over
the past couple of seasons, but is now keen to play more regularly
at a high level.
PSV appear ready to take Rekik back to his Holland homeland, but
Manchester City must first decide whether he figures in their
first-team plans or is likely to get more opportunities
PSV technical director Marcel Brands told Eindhovens Dagblad:
“He has to start with Manchester City on Monday and during the
pre-season it will become clear whether or not he can be loaned
In their first pre-season friendly, a double by Ryan Christie
and goals by Gary Warren and Graeme Shinnie gave Caley a
comfortable half-time lead.
McKay netted three times in 10 minutes after the break, with
Nick Ross adding an eighth before Shinnie scored a ninth after his
penalty had been saved.
Florin Costea opened the scoring for the Romanian side in the
ninth minute with substitute Patelis Kapetanos doubling that lead
in the 65th minute.
Hoops substitute Georgios Samaras pulled a goal back in the 82nd
minute but it was not enough to prevent the Scottish champions
losing their second challenge match this week, following the 1-0
loss to Ukrainian side Sevastopol.
However, Celtic manager Neil Lennon should not be unduly
worried. Their opponents are further ahead in their pre-season
preparations and at times it showed.
Celtic eyes are all on the Champions League qualifying ties
against Northern Irish side Cliftonville later this month and to
that end, the former Celtic skipper is assessing his squad.
A far from full-strength Parkhead side, captained by defender
Mikael Lustig and with Calum Waters making his first start for the
senior side, found themselves a goal behind during a shaky start
when Costea’s well-taken shot from inside the box curled high past
keeper Fraser Forster and in off the post.
The goal shook Celtic out of their slumber and moments later
striker Gary Hooper drove wide of the target from 20 yards to end a
The Romanians, who had former St Johnstone striker Gregory Tade
in their attack, reasserted themselves and Forster had to make a
great save from Ciprian Deac’s whipped-in free-kick before Costea
sent a header from a corner high over the bar.
The Celtic keeper made two further saves before the break as the
Parkhead side were kept at arm’s length.
James Forrest, Darnell Fisher and Charlie Mulgrew replaced Dylan
McGeouch, Lustig and Liam Henderson respectively for the start of
the second-half with Beram Kayal taking the armband and soon
Samaras replaced Amido Balde as the substitutions on both sides
Celtic began to look more purposeful but just after the hour
mark, after giving the ball away, Kayal had to make a last-gasp
tackle at the expense of a corner to prevent Paul Batin getting a
shot away inside the box.
The corner came to nothing but Batin was less hesitant minutes
later when he evaded Parkhead defender Kelvin Wilson to set up
Kapetanos to steer the ball past the helpless Forster from 12
Cluj looked in control and more likely to add to their lead but
in the 73rd minute Celtic defender Virgil Van Dijk missed a good
chance by heading a Mulgrew corner over the bar from 10 yards.
The Parkhead men reduced the lead with eight minutes to go when
Forrest’s cross from the right came off the knee of Samaras with
Mulgrew moving quickly out of the way to allow the ball to cross