Obika’s header earns Motherwell a point amid late drama at Celtic | Scottish Premiership

Jonathan Obika headed the equalizer as Motherwell and Celtic played to a 1-1 draw.

Substitute David Turnbull opened the scoring for the Premiership leaders with an 86th-minute penalty, but the visitors stunned Celtic Park in the 90th minute when Obika turned Blair Spittal’s corner perfectly home.

Earlier, Luis Palma saved a Liam Kelly penalty as Celtic struggled to overcome a stubborn Motherwell side who limited their hosts to few chances, although Yang Hyun-jun missed a keeper as Brendan Rodgers’ men took the majority of the lead dominated the second half.

Motherwell survived 10 minutes of stoppage time to claim their second straight draw at Parkhead, taking just a third point from their last 10 games. Stuart Kettlewell’s side also managed within seconds of this run to pick up a point against Celtic at Fir Park, only for Matt O’Riley to net shortly after Spittal’s equaliser.

Celtic made just one change from the team that beat Aberdeen 6-0: Anthony Ralston came on for Canadian right-back Alistair Johnston, while Motherwell had Calum Butcher in midfield in front of a three-man central defense with Mika Biereth up front.

Kelly made two good stops early on: O’Riley’s first goal and a header from teammate Stephen O’Donnell as he defended Palma’s inside corner. However, the visitors generally protected Kelly for most of the first period and grew in confidence towards the end of the half. O’Donnell’s shot was cleared from inside the goal area by Cameron Carter-Vickers, with Joe Hart failing after a ball over the goal line before Dan Casey shot over from the loose ball. The Celtic goalkeeper then made a diving save to deny Harry Paton’s well-struck shot from 20 yards.

Rodgers decided a half-time substitution was necessary, bringing on striker Oh Hyeon-gyu for midfielder Odin Thiago Holm, although this meant Kyogo Furuhashi dropped deeper. After a shaky start to the second half, Furuhashi initiated the move that led to Celtic’s first penalty in the 66th minute when he won the ball on the halfway line and shot forward before releasing to Palma.

The winger’s low shot was almost turned into his own net by Bevis Mugabi, only for Kelly to parry, and the defender’s sliding attack brought Oh down as the South Korean prepared to convert the rebound.

Mugabi escaped with a yellow card from referee Steven McLean after making a genuine attempt to play the ball and Motherwell survived the penalty after Kelly dived to the right to stop Palma’s attempt after the Honduran stopped his run-up.
Palma had scored from the penalty spot against Aberdeen but became the third Celtic player to miss a penalty this season after Reo Hatate and Turnbull.

Celtic brought on Turnbull and Mikey Johnston immediately after the miss. It was now one-way traffic and Johnston set up a great chance for Yang when the South Korean ran up the middle to meet the winger’s cross. However, his free header went past the post.

Liam Scales soon came close with a more difficult header as his shot went wide of the far post from a Turnbull corner, but the danger was not over for Motherwell as replays showed Butcher had held Johnston back as he followed up the header.
McLean pointed to the spot after watching the incident on the monitor.

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With Palma eliminated, Turnbull stepped up and fired the ball straight into the bottom corner for his seventh goal of the season.

Kettlewell immediately brought two strikers onto the pitch to join Obika’s substitute in attack and the extra strength paid off when they won a corner which equalized after their only shot on goal of the second half.

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