Friday 6 December 2019

Celtic manager Ronny Deila slates his own fans following unruly behaviour in Cup win

Flares on the pitch during the Scottish Cup, Fourth Round match at Stair Park, Stranraer.
Flares on the pitch during the Scottish Cup, Fourth Round match at Stair Park, Stranraer.

Ronnie Esplin

Boss Ronny Deila warned Celtic fans about endangering safety and the club's reputation after smoke bombs were thrown at the 3-0 William Hill Scottish Cup fourth-round win over League One side Stranraer at Stair Park.

A double by striker Leigh Griffiths and a first Hoops goal for Carlton Cole, making his first start since signing for the club in October, eased the Parkhead side into Monday night's fifth-round draw at Hampden Park.

However, just before the start of the match smoke bombs were thrown from the terrace behind the goal which housed Celtic supporters with one landing on the pitch while play was under way.

Celtic have a UEFA charge pending after fans set off flares in their Europa League clash with Fenerbahce in Turkey in December, the latest of several charges for supporter incidents which have been punished by European football's governing body in recent years.

Unlike UEFA, Scottish football does not have a liability rule in place, but nonetheless the Norwegian said: 'We don't want this. It's something that is making a bad reputation for the club.

"So this is absolutely something we need to get stopped.

"It is not positive for anybody and we, as a club, don't want to have anything to do with this.

"It's not my job - but I'm a part of this club.

"We've talked about it a lot and we have to get it away from this club.

"I'm not from here so I don't know what kind of sanctions we could face.

"But what I can say is that it's important we follow the rules - and that people are safe when they come to football matches.

"That is why we have football as a cultural thing that everybody can be part of.

"Safety has to be the most important thing in every game we play."

Griffiths came off the bench to score a late Ladbrokes Premiership winner against Partick Thistle last week after his recovery from a calf injury and his brace took his tally to 22 for the season.

Deila said: "He is my dream striker.

"He is important for us, he scores goals and works really hard for the team so I am very happy to have him back.

"I think Carlton did okay. He played well together with Leigh. They scored three between them, so I can't be very irritated by that.

"You can see Carlton is experienced and he knows how to score and be a striker."

Former West Ham striker Cole praised his prolific strike partner Griffiths.

He said: "A win is very pleasing and for me personally to get on the scoresheet.

"Griff played brilliant and it's great to be alongside a striker who just thinks about goals.

"Griff has been amazing. He's got 21 or 22 goals already - I'd love to have that kind of return.

"He's a top goalscorer and a great asset for the club."

Stranraer manager Brian Reid was pleased with 18-year-old keeper Max Currie who had a fine game as replacement for the injured David McGurn.

He said: "This will do him the world of good, his confidence, he made some good saves.

"I was delighted for the boys and all the players.

"I was pleased with the work ethic but disappointed to lose the goals we did.

"It would have been good to keep it 0-0 at half-time and see what happened from that."

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