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Celtic hearts broken by last minute goal

Celtic came within seconds of pulling off one of the most impressive results in their recent history. After taking the lead against Barcelona in the Nou Camp, they were drawing the game 1-1 for most of the match, until Barcelona came up with a winner in stoppage time.

It was heartbreaking for Celtic and their army of travelling fans, but they could take some consolation in a spirited defensive display against the club that is regarded as the strongest in world football.

Giorgios Samaras gave Celtic an early lead with a deflected header and Barcelona found their intricate attacks foundering against a chaotic but courageous Celtic defence, inspired by their giant goalkeeper Fraser Forster. A typical piece of passing interplay between Xavi and Andres Iniesta produced an equaliser, but throughout the second half Celtic resisted. Their own attacking ambitions were further reduced when Samaras had to withdraw with an injury.

Barcelona persevered and deserved their late winner, a tap-in from Jordi Alba after a cross had eluded all the massed Celtic defenders. It was still a cruel finish for the exhausted Celtic players.

"It is bittersweet," manager Neil Lennon said. "It's hard to take losing in the manner we did but I am so proud of the players. I think we have given the club and the country a huge shot in the arm. We can take a lot from the game. I think we have won a lot more admirers. I am very proud of them tonight, even though I don't like losing."

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