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Celtic beat Lazio to reach knockout stage of Europa League

The Hoops beat the Italian club 2-1 in Rome on Thursday night.

Champs: Celtic celebrate their win.
Champs: Celtic celebrate their win. SNS

Celtic are through to the knockout stage of the Europa League after battling back from behind to defeat Lazio 2-1.

James Forrest's strike in the 38th minute levelled the score following Ciro Immobile's goal seven minutes after kick-off at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on Thursday night.

Goal: James Forrest nets the equaliser.
Goal: James Forrest nets the equaliser. SNS

Olivier Ntcham then netted the winner in stoppage time.

Celtic manager Neil Lennon had hoped his team would end an unwanted record, having not won in 12 trips to Italy with three draws and nine defeats.

Hoops: Scott Brown and Callum McGregor.
Hoops: Scott Brown and Callum McGregor. SNS

The club top Group E with ten points, with Romanian outfit Cluj in second place with nine after they defeated France's Rennes 1-0.

Celtic, who are currently top of the Scottish Premiership, will next face Rennes in Glasgow on November 28.

Shoot: Odsonne Edouard almost made it 2-1 to Celtic.
Shoot: Odsonne Edouard almost made it 2-1 to Celtic. SNS

The build-up to Celtic v Lazio match had been marred with trouble.

During the reverse fixture at Celtic Park, Lazio supporters marched through Glasgow city centre making offensive gestures.

Celtic were charged over the display of an "illicit banner" during the game, which they won 2-1.

The two clubs were also charged by Uefa over "illicit chants" heard during their match on October 24.

Celtic had issued safety advice to fans ahead of the away match.

Supporters were advised to avoid wearing club colours while walking around Rome, particularly in the evening, stay in large groups where possible and keep a low profile.

Flares: Celtic fans during the Europa League clash.
Flares: Celtic fans during the Europa League clash. SNS

However, on Wednesday night, two Celtic fans were stabbed outside an Irish bar in the Italian capital.

Police said the injured pair were taken to hospital for treatment.

During the match on Thursday night, Celtic fans let off flares in the stadium.

https://stv.tv/sport/football/1442209-analysis-celtic-need-to-be-gladiators-in-the-lion-s-den/ | default

Following the game, Lennon said: "I am so happy and proud of the team.

"Not just winning the game but the way they played the game, the character, the bravery and above all else, real quality.

"It was a Titanic game again, a brilliant game to watch and it was a game we thoroughly deserved to win.

"To come here and play as good as that; this team keeps setting new boundaries. We have qualified after four games. That is unheard of for Celtic in Europe.

"It is amazing night, not just for me, the players, the board and obviously the magnificent support we had in the stadium tonight.

"It is historic. It is a privilege for me to coach these players and work with my backroom staff who do an unbelievable job behind the scenes.

"We are in a good place at the minute. It is job done as far as qualifying for the new year.

"We have a lot of work to do domestically but it is an amazing night for the team and the club."

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