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AC Milan dominate Celtic in goalless draw
February 21, 2007 06:41 IST
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AC Milan played out a goalless draw at Celtic after failing to capitalise on their dominance in Tuesday's Champions League first knockout round, first leg tie although they are now favourites to go through.
Alberto Gilardino had the best chance for the six-times European champions midway through the first half when he sprung the offside trap only for Celtic goalkeeper Artur Boruc to divert his effort past the post.
Italy striker Gilardino was then booked in the second half for a dive in the penalty area when it looked easier to score.
Midfielder Gennaro Gattuso, who used to play for Celtic's Glasgow rivals Rangers, also shot wide from a good position after a superb pass from Kaka as Milan came close in the second half.
"We had more chances in this match. We played a very good game and I am confident about the return leg," Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti told reporters.
Japanese midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura was Celtic's best player and nearly broke the deadlock before the break with a curling free kick but Milan keeper Zeljko Kalac made a smart save.
The big Australian was rarely troubled otherwise, although Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink had almost connected with another Nakamura free kick early on.
"I felt our will not to get beaten was 10 out of 10, but our technical level was five out of 10," Celtic manager Gordon Strachan said.
"We have to believe in ourselves a bit more, but that will come."
Milan captain Paolo Maldini became only the fifth player, and first Italian, to notch up 100 Champions League appearances but was booked early in the first half.
Celtic were European champions in 1967 but had never previously reached the latter stages of the Champions League.
UEFA Champions League 2006-07: The Complete Coverage