Date: 13th May 2009 at 8:48am
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Celtic boss Gordon Strachan has admitted there was panic last night after “horrendous defending” gave Dundee United a chance to get something out of the game when the result should have been beyond question.

Goals from Glenn Loovens and Georgios Samaras gave Celtic a 2-0 lead at Parkhead but David Robertson’s 57th minute strike was the start of a spirited fightback from Dundee United. Fortunately, Celtic managed to survive the onslaught and hang on until the final whistle and all three points.

Lukasz Zaluska, who will be joining Celtic in the summer, impressed Strachan, who joked the Polish keeper must not want to play in the Champions League next season as he pulled-off a number of decent saves.

Strachan told BBC Sport: “Over the last two seasons we’ve been 2-0 up against hem a couple of times and they’ve come back to 2-2. Tonight, because of a great cross by them and some horrendous defending by us they came back to 2-1, and I think everybody in here panicked for a while.

“The performance in the first hour showed that our guys are in good spirits and feel good about themselves. Our new goalie Lukasz Zaluska had quite a few good saves – he obviously doesn’t want to play in the Champions league (next) season! Next season we’re going to have two terrific goalkeepers.”

Overall, Celtic did what was needed to secure all three-points and while that should never be enough, it’s no longer something that can be taken for granted when there are players on the pitch with the mobility of corpses. However, winning games will not win Celtic the title unless Rangers slip-up.

Craig Levein, who has been mentioned as a possible successor to Strachan at Celtic, deserves praise as he is doing a very good job at Tannadice and has proven that if a manager can get the most out of his players, money and new signings are not necessary.

Celtic finish the season with a trip to Hibs on Sunday and then returning to Parkhead to face Hearts on the final day of the season, a week on Sunday. Rangers play against Hibs tonight in their first test of bottle-losing since beating Celtic at the weekend.

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