“Gary Neville predicted I’d miss,” ex-Man Utd striker recalls Celtic penalty miss

On This Day in 2006, Celtic beat Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United thanks to a stunning strike from Shunsuke Nakamura. Although, United could have salvaged a point as Louis Saha was afforded a chance to equalise from the spot.

Saha opened up about missing the penalty at Celtic Park. However, it was the aftermath of the game that upset the Frenchman so much with Gary Neville claiming he predicted that Saha would miss.

With a spectacular second half free-kick from Shunsuke Nakamura bursting the net, Celtic led going into the dying embers of the match. Although, with just minutes remaining, Sir Alex Ferguson’s side were given a life-line when Shaun Maloney was adjudged to have handled the ball from a United free-kick. Saha took the ball and the 60,000 in the stadium and fans around the world held their breath. Boruc saves. Celtic Qualify for the Last 16 with a victory over their English neighbours.

Back in 2019, Saha was speaking to FourFourTwo, about that famous night under the lights at Paradise. The Frenchman accepted that Artur Boruc made a good save to deny him on the November night in Glasgow’s East End thirteen years ago.

“I have to credit Celtic’s goalkeeper for the penalty.

“It was a good save.”

However, Saha has revealed that the worst thing about the penalty is that his teammate and then United captain, Gary Neville spoke out about how he thought the then 28-year-old would miss from the spot.

“The worst memory about it is that my own team-mate, Gary Neville, actually predicted I’d miss the penalty!

“He said that to someone, then I read it in a newspaper – I was fuming!

“But with Gary, we argued a lot, so no change there.

“It’s about how you react, and the following weekend I scored against Chelsea , one of the best goals I scored in my career.”

Saha left Manchester United in 2008 with 42 goals in 124 games; however, all these years later it is obvious that THAT miss at Celtic Park still haunts him. The game that night set Celtic on the way to the Last 16, the first of Gordon Strachan’s time at Celtic and sealed a famous European victory against a top Man Utd team.

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About Author

Born just as Celtic were stopping the Ten, Lubo98 follows Celtic home and away and helps run his local Celtic Supporters Club. He goes to all the games and is a Law Graduate. Has a particular fondness for Tom Rogic among the current Celts and both Lubo and Henrik form his earliest Celtic memories.

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