Aug 20, 2014 at 7.45pm UK at ​Ljudski vrt
Maribor
1-1
Celtic
Bohar (14')
Filipovic (51')
FT(HT: 1-1)
McGregor (6')
McGregor (75'), Lustig (92')

Live Commentary: Maribor 1-1 Celtic - as it happened

Celtic manager Ronny Delia looks on during the Scottish Premiership League Match between Celtic and Dundee United, at Celtic Park on August 16, 2014
© Getty Images
Relive the action in Sports Mole's live coverage of Celtic's 1-1 draw away to Maribor in part one of their Champions League playoff.

Celtic bagged a crucial away goal and earned a hard-fought 1-1 draw away to Maribor in the first leg of their Champions League playoff.

Callum McGregor tapped the visitors into a sixth-minute lead after good work from Stefan Johansen.

Nevertheless, the Slovenian outfit responded well and hit back through Damjan Bohar on 14 minutes as both sides cancelled each other out.

Below, you can relive all of the action with Sports Mole's live commentary.


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7.16pmGood evening ladies and gentlemen and a very warm welcome to Sports Mole's live coverage of Celtic's first-leg Champions League playoff away to Maribor of Slovenia. The Scottish giants are potentially 180 minutes away from mixing it with Europe's elite in the group stage of the competition - but not one of the Celtic players will be thinking that far ahead.

7.19pmRedemption is very much one of the primary motifs in this tie, with Celtic, eliminated in the previous round following a 6-1 aggregate thrashing by Legia Warsaw, reinstated to the tournament after the Polish club were found to have fielded an ineligible player. Consequently, you could forgive the Celtic lads for being happy just to be there, but adopting this mentality is the quickest route out of Europe for the Bhoys. Plenty of incentive for Maribor, too, who will enter the Europa League if they lose this tie. *Shivers*

7.21pmManager Ronny Deila, however, is confident that his troops will have learned from the 6-1 drubbing, and promises a "much better performance" here tonight. He told BBC Sport earlier today: "We have had a longer period together now, had two difficult matches against Legia and I think we have learned something from it. The players look fitter now, and quicker and sharper in their passing and pressing, so I am sure we are going to get a much better performance than we had against Legia."

7.22pmAnd with that, let's see how both teams line up shall we? Stay tuned my friends.

7.23pmTEAM NEWS!

Maribor: Handanovic; Suler, Rajcevic, Viler, Filipovic; Ibraimi, Dervisevic, Vrsic, Stojanovic; Bohar, Tavares

Celtic: Gordon; Lustig, Denayer, van Dijk, Izaguirre; McGregor, Mulgrew, Kayal, Johansen, Berget; Stokes


7.25pmDeila makes two changes from the 6-1 hammering of Dundee United on Saturday, with Efe Ambrose - who was a late arrival in Slovenia upon discovering that he was not ineligible - dropping to the bench for Mikael Lustig, while Beram Keyal displaces Kris Commons in the first XI. Jo Inge Berget, who scored twice against Dundee, starts in attack, with Anthony Stokes spearheading the forward line.

7.28pmMeanwhile, there's one or two notable inclusions in the Maribor lineup that could pose the Scots a serious threat tonight. Agim Ibrahimi, a reported transfer target of Celtic, has netted three times in their four qualifiers and starts in midfield tonight, while club record goalscorer Tavares leads their attack.

7.31pmBoth teams come into this one with contrasting form, as Celtic hit six past Dundee United, while the Slovenian champions went down 3-1 to Celje. The Bhoys can't afford to under-estimate Maribor, however. They have went out at this stage of the competition in each of the previous two years, so Ante Simundza's side will be looking to make it third-time lucky tonight.

7.35pmThere's no short of financial incentive for winning this tie, too. One of these two teams will progress into the group stage, where they can expect to receive a reported £20m windfall. It's a massive clash folks! Kickoff coming in about 10 minutes.

7.39pmCeltic simply must get a good result here ladies and gents. Deila's troops went down 4-1 in Poland against Legia, rendering the second leg in Glasgow little more than a formality. The Norwegian manager will want take a good result back to Parkhead and utilise the club's famous support on these European nights.

7.41pmPREDICTION! Right, I have whipped out the magic 8-ball for this one and asked it "can Celtic get a good result tonight?", to which it replied "it is certain"! So there we have it, the ball has spoken and I'll go 2-1 Celtic. Kickoff imminent!

7.44pmCharlie Mulgrew leads the Bhoys out to the famous Champions League music. Celtic will want to be hearing that a few more times yet!

0 minKICKOFF: Celtic get us underway in Slovenia ladies and gentlemen. Stay tuned as Sports Mole will be bringing you all the action LIVE!

2 minCeltic bossing the possession so far and Izaguirre whips the ball into the Maribor box but nobody was on hand on poke it home. Promising start for the visitors.

4 minJust a warning sign for Celtic as Maribor play an over-the-top ball to Tavares, who was through on goal but Danayer got back just in time to keep the Brazilian out.

6 minGOAL!!! Maribor 0-1 Celtic (McGREGOR)

7 minWhat a fantastic start by Celtic, who bag an away goal on six minutes. The goal was all about Stefan Johansen, who clipped a superb ball over the Maribor defence to Berget, who fired straight at Handanovic, but McGregor was on hand to fire into the empty net. Great start for the visitors.

9 minA stunned Maribor haven't settled since the goal at all and Celtic go in search of a second. Ronny Deila's side look hungry.

10 minViler registers Maribors first shot but it's a shocker and flies out for a thrown in, right beside the corner flag. Maybe he's bidding for a place in Europe's Ryder Cup team. Who knows?

12 minMaribor fans are restless already, whistling like wolves as Celtic carry the ball forward. It was a like a scene from The Grey just then.

14 minGOAL!!! Maribor 1-1 Celtic (Bohar)

15 minThrilling opening 15 minutes in Slovenia folks as Maribor get back on level terms. Tavares takes a tumble in the area, but the referee plays on and Damjan Bohar cooly slots past Craig Gordon. UEFA referees often get a hard time but Pavel Královec made the right call there. 1-1.

17 minStill, Celtic won't panic just yet. They've got a priceless away goal in the bag and look the better side thus far. There's plenty more goals in this one yet, my friends.

19 minOFF THE LINE! Celtic come within millmetres of bagging a second away goal, as McGregor sees his header cleared off the line following a corner. Really good from Celtic since being pegged back.

23 minWho had under 10.5 corners? Celtic have had about six in the last few minutes but, barring their last one, have not made the most of them so far. As I write that, Lustig heads over from another Johansen corner. He might've done better there, you know.

25 minSAVE! Craig Gordon pulls of a comfortable, yet crucial save, palming Bohar's effort away as the Slovenian looked for a second via the near post. It was never beating the Scot, though.

32 minAnte Simundza's side have done really well since falling behind on six minutes. One or two dodgy moments from corners, but overall they've responded excellently and it looks very 50-50 now. 13 minutes until half time.

35 minThe home fans chant "Maribor" and try spur their team into grabbing a half-time lead. They could use a songwriter, but their intentions are clear enough. Celtic fans, meanwhile, are also in good voice, but the sting has been taken out this one in recent minutes.

39 minIbrahimi is growing into the clash a little more recently. Certainly one of their marquee players, having enjoyed a loan spell in Serie A last season, Maribor will look to him above all others to help them tonight. Six minutes left in the half.

41 minCHANCE: Vrsic should have really fired Maribor ahead here folks. First, Craig Gordon could only punch Ibrahimi's stinging effort but, when the ball fell to Vrsis, his half volley from an acute angle flew into row-z. Big let off there for Celtic.

44 minCeltic will undoubtedly be the happier of the two sides to hear the half-time whistle. Deila's side started by far the better of both sides but, to their credit, Maribor have stuck to their task, levelled up and probably should be ahead. Not long left in this half.

8.31pmHALF-TIME: That's it for the first half here, ladies and gentlemen - and what a half it was! Callum McGregor tapped Celtic into a sixth-minute lead, grabbing a key away goal in the process, but Maribor came back strong and levelled up through Bohar on 14 minutes.

8.34pmThe half-time score gives Ronny Deila a bit of a dilemma ahead of the next 45 minutes. Is he content with the one away goal, and try bring the 1-1 back to Parkhead next Tuesday, or will he smell blood and go for the win? We'll find out shortly.

8.38pmIf you want a nice and tidy condensed version of what transpired during the opening 45 minutes then you can read my colleague's report here.

8.42pmThere's four other first-leg playoffs going on now. Here's a brief run-down on how they look at the break:

Aalborg 1-0 Apoel Nicosia
Lille 0-0 Porto
Slovan Bratislava 0-1 Bate Borisov
Standard Liege 0-1 Zenit


45 minSECOND-HALF UNDERWAY: Right, Maribor get us back underway in Slovenia folks. If the first 15 minutes of this half mirror the events from the opening half then we're in for fireworks!

47 minCHANCE! Great start to the half for Maribor as Tavares fires agonisingly wide of Craig Gordon's post. I knew there was a Brazilian on the field. It was a fine strike but just lacked that bit of direction needed to ripple the net.

50 minBOOKING: Zeljko Filipovic is the recipient of the game's first card following a late challenge on Jason Denayer. No complaints from Filipovic.

53 minSHOT: Ante Simundza is winning the battle of the half-time team-talks over Ronny Deila, anyway. Bohar evades a couple of challenges and takes aim from outside the area, but his long-range effort flies over the bar. Really promising start to the second half for the hosts.

56 minCeltic enjoy their first foray into enemy territory in this half, but Izaguirre's speculative cross is cut out by Handanovic. Better from the visitors, though.

58 minSAVE! Craig Gordon preserves parity by pushing Ibrahimi's goal-bound header out for a corner. Nobody in green and white is more relieved than Emilio Izaguirre, whose sloppy pass back to Gordon was cut out by Bohar, who then fed Tavares but Ibrahimi failed to beat the Scot with his header.

60 minThe travelling Celtic fans sing one of their players' names to the tune of Hey Jude. What they really need is Help. Ronny Deila would take this 1-1 now. No doubt.

62 minPENALTY APPEAL: Celtic see a penalty appeal waived away as Anthony Stokes feels that his free header caught the hand of Suler before it could reach the net. It did look a tenuous appeal, to be fair.

65 minCHANCE! Anthony Stokes has come into this one a bit more recently and very nearly fired Celtic ahead. The Irishman controlled a long ball from Mulgrew, before galloping past his marker but his shot trickled narrowly wide of the post. It's a little more promising for Celtic following a mixed start to the half.

70 minThere's about 20 minutes left in this one my friends. Ronny Deila has sought to freshen things up a bit and Efe Ambrose is set to come on. Interestingly, Ambrose was a late arrival in Slovenia, with Celtic believing that he was due to serve the last of a two-game ban, when it was really a one-match ban. Good thing they called Nyon just to make sure, eh?

73 minSHOT! Jasmin Handanovic has had to tip Virgil van Dijk's stinging shot over the bar as Celtic continue to grow stronger in this second half. They've done really well to settle after Maribor bossed the opening stages of this half.

76 minMaribor now enjoying plenty of possession but look to be struggling to get beyond Celtic's rear guard now. They aren't short of support, however, as the home fans are in good voice, urging them on. Roughly 13 minutes of normal time left in this one.

79 minSUBSTITUTION: Few subs to tell you about now as Damjan Bojar departs the field for Ethiopia-born Israel international Sintayehu Sallallich, while Mertelj also replaces Dervisevic. Meanwhile, Leigh Griffiths, who turns 24 today, replaces Anthony Stokes. There's only way he'll want to mark the occasion and he's got about 10 minutes in which to do it!

83 minSAVE! Stunning save from Gordon to deny Mertelj, who took aim from some 40 yards but the ex-Scotland goalkeeper pulled off an acrobatic stop to deny the Slovenian. He's had a tough few years Gordon, with recurring injuries hindering his fitness in recent years, but he's done excellent tonight when called upon. If Celtic leave Slovenia with a 1-1 draw then he'll have played a major role.

86 minSUBSTITUTION: Beram Kayal goes off for Nir Biton as Celtic defend a corner. It comes to nothing as Biton gets stuck in right away, heading clear to avert the danger.

88 minHandanovic races off his line and beats Leigh Griffiths to a 50-50 ball, taking a leaf out of Manuel Neuer's book it would seem. It was a good chance for Celtic following McGregor's searching ball, but Handanovic was on hand to clear the danger.

90 minTHREE ADDITIONAL MINUTES: The fourth official has indicated a minimum of three minutes. Is there a sting in this one? Time will tell. Stay tuned!

90+2 minCHANCE! Celtic have a decent chance to win this as they break on the counter with Griffiths, who plays a tidy reverse ball to the advancing Johansen, but Sulur gets across really well to stop the Norwegian from getting his shot off at the crucial moment. That's likely to be the last chance.

9.33pmFULL TIME: MARIBOR 1-1 CELTIC

9.35pmIt's advantage Celtic, ladies and gentlemen. Ronny Deila's side will bring a crucial away goal back to Parkhead next Tuesday after earning a 1-1 draw at Maribor tonight. Both goals came in the first half as Damjan Bohar cancelled out Callum McGregor's sixth-minute opener.

9.39pmWell, that's all she wrote my friends. Thank you for joining Sports Mole's live coverage of what was an entertaining first-leg playoff in Slovenia. Be sure to come back on Tuesday to see if Celtic can hang on to their slender advantage en route to the group stage! Goodnight and god bless.

Efe Ambrose of Celtic in action during the UEFA Champions League group H match between AC Milan and Celtic at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on September 18, 2013
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