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Celtic out of Champions League

Thursday, August 28, 2014

GLASGOW - Celtic's second attempt at qualifying for the group stages of the Champions League ended in failure as a Marcos Tavares goal handed NK Maribor a 1-0 win to earn the Slovenian side a 2-1 aggregate win in their play-off match.

The Hoops, who had been defeated 6-1 by Legia Warsaw in their third-round match, had been handed a reprieve when the Polish champs were thrown out the competition for fielding an ineligible player.

However, the Glasgow giants, who earned a 1-1 draw in Slovenia in the first leg, failed to grasp their chance as they failed to score for a second consecutive match for the first time since August 2011.

An encouraging start from Celtic which saw them come close through Jo Inge Berget and Virgik van Dijk soon gave way to nerves as Maribor grew in confidence.

Van Dijk blew a golden opportunity to level the tie in stoppage time as Celtic drop down to the group stages of the Europa League.

Celtic, who were looking to book a place in the lucrative group stage of the Champions League for the third year running, were unrecognisable from the side that lost 1-0 at Inverness as the Hoops reverted to the line-up that earned them a 1-1 draw against Maribor in the first leg.

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