Dundee 1-2 Celtic: Side 'naive' to concede late - Ronny Deila

Both Gary Mackay-Steven (left) and Virgil Van Dijk (centre) scored for Celtic
Both Gary Mackay-Steven (left) and Virgil Van Dijk (centre) scored for Celtic

Celtic manager Ronny Deila called his side "naive" after they gifted Dundee a late goal in what had otherwise been a comfortable 2-1 win at Dens Park.

Jim McAlister struck late after Gary Mackay-Steven and Virgil van Dijk had scored either side of half-time.

"It was a little bit naive of us to concede a goal so late, but we controlled the whole game," Deila told BBC Scotland, praising his side's recovery from their Scottish Cup semi-final defeat by Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

"I don't think they had a chance before late in the game,

"We scored two goals and could have scored more, but I think it's a very good effort from the boys to come back from Sunday, 120 minutes and today."

The result moves Celtic eight points clear of closest challengers Aberdeen at the top of the Scottish Premiership with five games to play.

Deila's men return to Tayside on Sunday to face Dundee United at Tannadice, a day after Aberdeen travel to Inverness.

"We put ourselves again in a good position and now it's getting closer and closer to the end," said Deila.

"We hope for a good result for Inverness on Saturday and hopefully we can beat Dundee United on Sunday.

"I think Dundee is a very good team, so it's going to be the same, but when we have supporters like we had today it feels like a home game.

"That's important for us that we have supporters who stand behind us all the time and today they were unbelievably good."

Dundee manager Paul Hartley revealed his side had prepared for Virgil van Dijk's free-kicks but could do little to stop the Dutchman putting one in the top corner.

"It's something we worked on over the last day or so - Van Dijk in that area," he said.

"We tried to get the wall to jump because we watched the Caley game and they didn't jump and he got it over.

"But even we jumped tonight and he still managed to get it over. It's a fantastic free-kick and he's got real quality."

The Dens Park boss added: "I thought our final ball let us down tonight, the quality in the final third let us down.

"But, overall, I thought we had a good disciplined performance. It was two set-pieces that done us.

"I thought the players' attitude was great. They didn't cause us too many problems tonight. We're playing against a good side that's going for the title."

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