It feels a lifetime away since Celtic actually seemed competitive in Europe – when in reality, it was only five years ago or so when Brendan’s men enjoyed their most successful continental spells.
Evidently it will be a long time until a European title even begins to flicker a glow of reality, but for now Celtic fans can look back and enjoy the spells where they could hold their own against Europe’s elite.
Sergio Aguero, David Silva, Raheem Sterling and John Stones featured at Celtic Park that day, in a side that had made the semi finals in the season prior. Yet they were rocked after just three minutes when an admittedly dubious goal from Moussa Dembele put the Celts 1-0 up – even if it shouldn’t have counted.
Fernandinho equalised just eight minutes later with a tidy finish, but Celtic weren’t done there.
A superb break down the right-hand side from Nir Bitton found Tom Rogic, and with Kieran Tierney screaming for the ball in acres, the Aussie found him – who cooly converted via Raheem Sterling’s right boot to restore the lead.
Sterling scored a wonderful goal himself to make amends by sending Tierney the wrong way, leaving the game tied at the break.
Then came a moment of magic, and one of the more memorable moments at Celtic Park in years gone by when Dembele scored an overhead kick.
Some typically brilliant work by Tierney down the right-hand side found the Frenchman with his back to goal 12 yards out – before he took a touch with his thigh and acrobatically sent Claudio Bravo the wrong way to send Paradise into delirium.
The guile and class of City did pay dividends for them, in all fairness – a classy build-up to their third resulted in Nolito equalising – but all in all, Celtic could be proud of that result given just how far City had got in the same competition just months prior.
5 years ago today, Celtic 3:3 Man City.
— Li’l Ze (@LilZe_7) September 27, 2021
The team that day was: Gordon, Lustig, Toure, Sviatchenko, Tierney, Brown, Bitton, Forreest, Rogic, Sinclair, Dembele.