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Celtic booed off after draw with Dundee

Updated: Thursday, 03 Mar 2016 07:26 | Comments

A night of frustration for Celtic and Mikael Lustig
A night of frustration for Celtic and Mikael Lustig

Celtic 0-0 Dundee 

Celtic's lead at the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership was cut to four points after a goalless draw with Dundee at Parkhead which saw the home side booed off.

Dens Park boss Paul Hartley - who, with one eye on the William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final tie with Rangers at Ibrox on Saturday, started with skipper Gary Harkins, top scorer Kane Hemmings and Greg Stewart on the bench - had a comfortable night against the lacklustre Hoops.

Indeed, defender Kostadin Gadzhalov missed a sitter with his head late in the game which would have given the Taysiders all three points.

With Aberdeen beating Dundee United 1-0 at Tannadice the title race is back on.

While Dundee were under-strength, Celtic also had a different look to their side although defender Dedryck Boyata kept his place after the club appealed the red card he picked up against Hamilton at New Douglas Park last Friday night.

In the five changes manager Ronny Deila made, number one keeper Craig Gordon returned with 18-year-old attacker Patrick Roberts making his first start since signing an 18-month loan deal from Manchester City.

Charlie Mulgrew made his 200th appearance for the Parkhead club with Tom Rogic and Stuart Armstrong also back in midfield.

Roberts showed his promise as early as the third minute when he drifted effortlessly past Kevin Holt and Gadzhalov only to see his drive blocked by another defender, Julen Etxabeguren.

But Dundee, also missing injured former Celtic defender Darren O'Dea, looked comfortable as the match unfolded.

Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths had three unsuccessful attempts on goal but it was a dull affair.

Scott Bain made a save from a Mulgrew free-kick on the half-hour mark following a trip by Dundee defender Paul McGinn on Armstrong to break the monotony.

In the 36th minute, after making a save from Rogic, the Dundee keeper mis-kicked completely at the edge of his box attempting to clear a Michael Lustig pass, leaving Griffiths looking to tap into the empty net but McGinn came to rescue with a saving tackle.

The home side were booed off at half-time.

Winger James Forrest, who has rejected a new contract offer, replaced Armstrong for the start of the second half but there was no discernible improvement with Gordon having to make a save from Craig Wighton's shot on the turn from 12 yards as the Dees became emboldened.

Just after the hour mark burly striker Colin Kazim-Richards replaced Rogic to partner Griffiths as Deila tried another avenue.

Hemmings replaced Rory Loy, Harkins came on for Nicky Low and Stewart replaced Wighton, the last substitution made just before Bain made a good finger-tip save from Mulgrew's looping shot.

In the 80th minute Kris Commons replaced Lustig for Deila's last throw at the dice but it was Gadzhalov who somehow missed the goal from six yards from a Stewart corner and then Harkins slashed wide in the fourth of four added minutes before the final whistle brought jeers raining down on the home side.

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