Gala Fairydean Rovers 1

Celtic 3

By Callum Hodgson

at Netherdale

GALA Fairydean Rovers welcomed a young Celtic side to Netherdale for their final pre-season game on Thursday night.

And new manager Neil Hastings was pleased with the way his side performed ahead of his Lowland League debut.

He told us: "It was a great test for us. You can see some of the young, top quality players Celtic have got.

"But I think we gave a good account of ourselves with five players out missing.

"It was another good, positive performance and there are a lot of things we can work on going forward.

"There have been a lot of changes here and I am delighted with the players we have managed to bring in.

"We have got players at the club who want to be here, know what the club is about and know the style and philosophy we are looking to implement.

"I think we will have a squad that can play good football and a one that is equipped to compete in the Lowland League this year."

The home side came close just two minutes into the game, but Celtic stopper Jude Smith was equal to Ryan Mayer's effort from 18 yards.

Gala keeper Fraser Morton also showed off his skills soon after. His excellent fingertip save denied Adam Montgomery who skipped through the defence.

But moments later, the visitors did go in front.

Montgomery set up Ben Wylie on the edge of the area and he drilled the ball into the bottom right corner.

And 10 minutes later the came close again following a quick move involving Jaden Ferguson and Michael Sparkes.

But it was Gala who struck next.

Lewis Grant fired in a wonderfully-weighted ball towards Ross Aitchison and he guided his header into the net.

Marc Berry then had a chance to put the Netherdale side in front but his effort was saved.

However, it was to be Celtic's night.

Wylie grabbed his second straight from the second half kick off following a defensive mix-up.

And despite a decent 45 from Gala, they conceded again on 85 minutes when substitute Keiran McGrath burst forward and fired home.

Gala: F Morton, L Grant, A Chingwalu, B Herdman, C McBride, N Kelly, L Kinchant (K Martin 72), C Green (A Callow 49), R Aitchison (J Cowan 62), R Mayer (W Curran 72), M Berry (C Bunker 72)