Champions League - Qualifying Play-off - 2nd Leg
FC AstanaFC Astana4CelticCeltic3

Astana 4-3 Celtic (agg 4-8)

By Andy CampbellBBC Sport Scotland
Leigh Griffiths scores
Leigh Griffiths scored the final goal of an enthralling match in Kazakhstan

Celtic completed an 8-4 aggregate win to reach the Champions League group stage despite a scare in Astana.

Leading 5-0 from the first leg, Brendan Rodgers' side fell behind on the night when Dimitri Shomko's shot was diverted into the net by Kristoffer Ajer.

And though Scott Sinclair produced a stylish equaliser, Serikzhan Muzhikov and Patrick Twumasi (2) put the hosts 4-1 up with 20 minutes still to play.

But Olivier Ntcham and Leigh Griffiths made the tie safe for the visitors.

It is Celtic's first defeat in all competitions since losing to Barcelona in Glasgow on 23 November, but they can now look forward to their 10th appearance in the group stage.

The Scottish champions will be in the fourth pot of seeds for Thursday's draw in Monaco unless Liverpool fail to progress against Hoffenheim on Wednesday.

Celtic celebrate
Sinclair (right) added to his brace in Glasgow and Ntcham (left) also scored for the visitors

Rodgers has now led Celtic to the group stage in each of his two seasons as manager, his side having taken on Barcelona, Manchester City and Borussia Monchengladbach last year.

With Astana faced with such a sizeable first-leg deficit, Celtic may have expected an early onslaught from their hosts in Kazakhstan, but the visitors looked the more incisive early on.

After earlier chances for Sinclair and team-mate Callum McGregor, there seemed to be no imminent danger to Celtic's lead until Shomko's speculative shot was deflected by Ajer's outstretched foot to wrong-foot keeper Craig Gordon.

Astana had restored some belief but their enthusiasm was blunted when Sinclair collected on Celtic's left, drove at the defence and curled a sumptuous shot past Nenad Eric. It was the Englishman's third goal of the tie.

The home side needed six more goals at that stage and Marin Anicic's header was superbly clawed over by Gordon as half-time approached.

Astana capitalised on a poor Scott Brown pass to get ahead early in the second period, Srdan Grahovac's chipped ball deflecting into Muzhikov's path for a straightforward finish.

Serikzhan Muzhikov scores
Muzhikov's strike set up a nervous second half for Celtic

No sooner had Celtic taken the kick-off, they found themselves doing so again. Twumasi was left unmarked to nod in Shomko's cross.

Junior Kabananga should have converted from the edge of the six-yard box at the end of another flowing Astana move.

Rodgers introduced defender Anthony Ralston in place of McGregor and placed the substitute in a back three with Nir Bitton and Ajer in an attempt to weather the storm.

Griffiths had an excellent chance but got under his shot after chesting the ball down in the box.

Astana scored almost immediately, Twumasi gliding away from the Celtic defence on the right of the box and beating Gordon at his near post.

After Griffiths' free-kick was saved, Twumasi could have completed his hat-trick when the ball fell to him inside the area, but he got too much elevation on the shot.

Ntcham had been an assured operator in the Celtic midfield and he found the net with the aid of a deflection to ease Celtic's nerves.

Griffiths put earlier frustrations behind him with a fierce right-foot shot as Astana were again caught on the break.

Stanimir Stoilov's side restored some pride and can console themselves with the knowledge they will be in the Europa League group stage, the draw for which takes place on Friday.

Line-ups

FC Astana

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Eric
  • 4Shitov
  • 44PostnikovBooked at 70mins
  • 5Anicic
  • 77ShomkoBooked at 82mins
  • 18Maevski
  • 6KleinheislerSubstituted forGrahovacat 13'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 23Twumasi
  • 7Muzhikov
  • 14TomasovSubstituted forBeysebekovat 45'minutesSubstituted forTagybergenat 81'minutes
  • 30Kabananga

Substitutes

  • 8Grahovac
  • 15Beysebekov
  • 17Tagybergen
  • 21Shaikhov
  • 25Maliy
  • 35Mokin
  • 45Murtazaev

Celtic

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Gordon
  • 23Lustig
  • 35Ajer
  • 6Bitton
  • 63Tierney
  • 21Ntcham
  • 8Brown
  • 49ForrestSubstituted forRalstonat 57'minutes
  • 42McGregorSubstituted forRogicat 57'minutes
  • 11SinclairSubstituted forArmstrongat 65'minutes
  • 9Griffiths

Substitutes

  • 12Gamboa
  • 14Armstrong
  • 15Hayes
  • 18Rogic
  • 24de Vries
  • 56Ralston
  • 59Miller
Referee:
Pavel Kralovec
Attendance:
19,075

Match Stats

Home TeamFC AstanaAway TeamCeltic
Possession
Home36%
Away64%
Shots
Home16
Away18
Shots on Target
Home10
Away7
Corners
Home5
Away3
Fouls
Home19
Away6

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, FC Astana 4, Celtic 3.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, FC Astana 4, Celtic 3.

  3. Booking

    Srdjan Grahovac (FC Astana) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  4. Post update

    Kristoffer Ajer (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Srdjan Grahovac (FC Astana).

  6. Goal!

    Goal! FC Astana 4, Celtic 3. Leigh Griffiths (Celtic) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Nir Bitton.

  7. Post update

    Corner, FC Astana. Conceded by Anthony Ralston.

  8. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Stuart Armstrong (Celtic) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Leigh Griffiths.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Olivier Ntcham (Celtic).

  10. Post update

    Igor Shitov (FC Astana) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Post update

    Anthony Ralston (Celtic) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Dmitriy Shomko (FC Astana).

  13. Post update

    Nir Bitton (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Serikzhan Muzhikov (FC Astana).

  15. Booking

    Dmitriy Shomko (FC Astana) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  16. Post update

    Stuart Armstrong (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  17. Post update

    Foul by Dmitriy Shomko (FC Astana).

  18. Substitution

    Substitution, FC Astana. Askhat Tagybergen replaces Abzal Beysebekov because of an injury.

  19. Goal!

    Goal! FC Astana 4, Celtic 2. Olivier Ntcham (Celtic) right footed shot from the left side of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Stuart Armstrong.

  20. Post update

    Delay over. They are ready to continue.

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Scores, Results & Fixtures

Tuesday 22nd August 2017

As It Stood

A

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Arsenal64201861214
2PSG6330137612
3Ludogorets6033615-93
4FC Basel6024312-92

B

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Napoli6321118311
2Benfica6222101008
3Besiktas6141914-57
4Dynamo Kyiv61238625

C

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Barcelona65012041615
2Man City6231121029
3B Mgladbach6123512-75
4Celtic6033516-113

D

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Atl Madrid650172515
2Bayern Munich6402146812
3FC Rostov6123612-65
4PSV Eindhoven6024411-72

E

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Monaco632197211
2B Leverkusen624084410
3Tottenham62136607
4CSKA Moscow6033511-63

F

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1B Dortmund64202191214
2Real Madrid63301610612
3Legia Warsaw6114924-154
4Sporting610558-33

G

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Leicester641176113
2FC Porto632193611
3FC Copenhagen62317259
4Club Bruges6006214-120

H

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Juventus6420112914
2Sevilla632173411
3Lyon62225328
4Dinamo Zagreb6006015-150
View full Champions League tables

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