Guardiola's perfect record falls in thrilling Celtic draw

Wed Sep 28, 2016 5:42pm EDT
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GLASGOW (Reuters) - Pep Guardiola witnessed the end to his perfect record with Manchester City as his Premier League leaders had to come from behind three times to earn a 3-3 draw at Celtic in a dazzling Champions League Group C encounter on Wednesday.

Guardiola's men were taken aback by the fevered atmosphere at Celtic Park as they were denied an 11th straight win which would have equalled Tottenham Hotspur's 1960-61 landmark as the best start to a season by any English club.

The inspired Scottish champions, unrecognizable from the side humbled 7-0 at Barcelona in their opening game, sniffed a sensation after Moussa Dembele scored at the start of each half and when Raheem Sterling netted a first-half own goal.

Yet City simply refused to be subdued, responding with strikes from Fernandinho, the excellent Sterling and Nolito and coming close to a late winner before settling for the point that moves them into second place in the group on four points behind Barcelona, who won 2-1 at Borussia Moenchengladbach.

"The support was amazing and that combination of the players' effort and the atmosphere made it a difficult night for Manchester City," said Celtic's manager Brendan Rodgers.

Yet Guardiola was left frustrated by the end of City's 100 percent record, though proud of his side's resilience. "We should have won it," he said, reflecting on their squandered late chances.

Following their humiliation at the Nou Camp, Celtic vowed it would be very different at their famed Glasgow fortress and took only two-and-a-half minutes to become the first team to take a lead against City this season.

A well-aimed free kick from Scott Sinclair found James Forrest at the back post and his volley across goal was met by an Erik Sviatchenko header that brushed off the chest of Dembele, who actually looked offside.

City did well to regain a modicum of composure amid Celtic's whirlwind start, Fernandinho controlling a mis-hit Aleksandar Kolarov shot before firing in an 11th-minute equalizer.   Continued...

Britain Soccer Football - Celtic v Manchester City - UEFA Champions League Group Stage - Group C - Celtic Park, Glasgow, Scotland  - 28/9/16
Celtic's Moussa Dembele celebrates scoring their third goal 
Action Images via Reuters / Lee Smith