Florian Wirtz ran the show in Glasgow, scoring for the sixth consecutive game as Bayer Leverkusen beat Celtic 4-0 to go top of UEFA Europa League Group G on goal-difference.
Celtic 0-4 Bayer Leverkusen
Goals: 0-1 Hincapie (25'), 0-2 Wirtz (35'), 0-3 Alario (pen. 58'), 0-4 Adli (90'+4)
Leverkusen went for the jugular right from kick-off, and after Kerem Demirbay had tested Joe Hart with an early drive, Lucas Alario had the ball in the back of the Celtic net after following up on Wirtz's effort, but the goal was ruled out for offside. The hosts nearly returned fire when Kyogo Furuhashi got around Lukas Hradecky, but Jonathan Tah did magnificently to get back and recover the danger. Kyogo broke through once again midway through the half, but Hradecky raced off his line and got enough on the Japan attacker's shot to turn it round for a corner. Leverkusen began to settle after that flurry, though, and they nearly took the lead after Wirtz picked out Moussa Diaby with a fine lofted pass, Joe Hart denying him at the last. Bayer broke through moments later, however, Mitchel Bakker taking advantage of David Turnbull's slip and squaring for Piero Hincapie to score a simple first goal for the club. Leverkusen doubled their advantage before the half was out when Paulinho picked out Wirtz who scored for the sixth game on the bounce.
Celtic started the second half brightly, and Kyogo's shot on the spin looked destined for the far corner, but Hradecky - who has saved a Bundesliga-high 28 shots this season - was equal to the effort. Jota then tested the Finland No.1 with a thumping effort from the edge of the box, but a big left hand kept him at bay before Leil Abada fired wide on the rebound. Turnbull then spun a free-kick wide of Hradecky's near post, but just as in the first half, Bayer began to get their foot on the ball in the second, and they pulled further clear when Alario sent Hart the wrong way from the penalty spot. Kyogo then missed an open goal at the other end before Alario followed suit, firing high from point-blank range after Jeremie Frimpong's cut-back. Second-half substitute Patrik Schick - scorer of the Goal of the Tournament against Scotland at the recent UEFA Euro 2020 - tested Hart with another effort late on, before Amine Adli added gloss to the scoreline at the death.
- Hincapie's opener was his first ever goal in his 29th appearance at senior professional level.
- Wirtz has contributed six goals and five assists in seven competitive appearances so far this season.
- Alario opened his account for the season. Last term, the Argentine scored 15 goals in all competitions.
- Frimpong made 51 appearances in all competitions for Celtic before moving to Leverkusen in January.
- Leverkusen beat Celtic's Glasgow rivals Rangers 4-1 on aggregate in the last 16 of the 2019/20 Europa League.
- Die Werkself hold the all-time away record in the Europa League group stage (W8, D2, L3).
Celtic: Hart - Ralston, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt, Montgomery - Rogic (Bitton 66'), McGregor (c) (McCarthy 66'), Turnbull (Giakoumakis 74') - Abada, Furuhashi (Ajeti 74'), Jota
Unused subs: Barkas, Bain, Scales, Soro, Urhoghide, Shaw, Welsh
Out: Bolingoli (unconfirmed), Dembele (knee), Forrest (hamstring), Johnston (hamstring), Jullien (knee), Juranovic (knock), Taylor (shoulder)
Coach: Ange Postecoglou
Leverkusen: Hradecky (c) - Frimpong, Tah, Hincapie, Bakker - Aranguiz (Amiri 65'), Demirbay (Bellarabi 65') - Diaby, Wirtz (Adli 73'), Paulinho - Alario (Schick 74')
Unused subs: Lunev, Neutgens, Retsos, Kossounou, Sinkgraven
Out: Baumgartlinger (knee), Fosu-Mensah (knee), Palacios (ankle), Tapsoba (ankle)
Coach: Gerardo Seoane
As it happened!
LEVERKUSEN WIN AGAIN
Leverkusen beat Celtic 4-0 to go top of UEFA Europa League Group G on goal-difference. They'll take some stopping.
Amine Adli scores his first Leverkusen goal! The French youngster had an effort ruled out at the weekend, but this one sticks. It's superb a run to collect Amiri's pass, and an emphatic finish!
Bellarabu races away and fires goalwards, but Hart's off his line to make the stop.
Four to go at Celtic Park. Another tidy win for Leverkusen, though Hradecky more than played his part between the goal-posts.
Paulinho had to deal with huge expectation levels when he joined Bayer in summer 2018, but the 21-year-old Brazilian is beginning to live up to the hype. Another impressive display from the Olympic gold medal winner on his sixth outing of the campaign, and 47th in Leverkusen colours.
Demirbay sends in the ensuing corner, but Hincapie sends his attempt well wide. Leverkusen still hungry for more...
Patrick Schick heads goalwards, forcing a superb save from Hart. That would have been some introduction to the game, not that the home fans don't know anything about him. He put two past Scotland in the colours of Czech Republic at UEFA Euro 2020, including an audacious strike from 49.7 yards that was voted Goal of the Tournament.
SHOULD BE FOUR!
Possibly Leverkusen's easiest chance of the night as Frimpong races away and crosses for Alario. He connects well enough from eight yards, but skies it!
GO GO GADGET ARM!
Celtic almost pull one straight back, but Jota can't beat the spread-eagle Hradecky with his header. Kyogo should bury the rebound, but fires into the side netting.
Alario sends Hart the wrong way from the spot for his first goal of the season. That all came about following a Celtic mistake in midfield. Surely no way back for the home side.
Carter-Vickers handles Paulinho's shot. No need for VAR - Alario to take the penalty...
HRADECKY ON THE STRETCH!
Leverkusen's No.1 is at full stretch to turn away Jota's strike from the edge of the area. Abada's first to the loose ball, but can't direct it on target. Three Celtic shots on goal, three saves from Hradecky this second half.
Hradecky with a more routine save this time to keep out Montgomery. Leverkusen's outfield players need to wake up!
Hradecky takes flight to get fingertips to a shot on the turn from Kyogo. Get that man a superhero cape!
Leverkusen are in the driving seat, thanks to those Hincapie and Wirtz goals. You have to say, Gerardo Seoane's troupe are very good value for their lead. Their movement in transition is on another level!
Two additional minutes at the end of the first half. No real urgency about Bayer's play as the clock winds down.
LEVERKUSEN IN CHARGE
Celtic made an encouraging start, but Leverkusen are now in complete control. They look capable of scoring whenever they venture forward.
Florian Wirtz scores for the sixth competitive game in a row. The ball from Paulinho was something else - he could have gone for goal himself, but selfleslly picked out Wirtz to finish with aplomb. Is there a better 18-year-old in world football right now?
That was Hincapie's first senior goal. The 19-year-old, who made the switch to the BayArena from Talleres this summer, breaks his duck on his 29th outing at club level.
Way to check Celtic's momentum! Bakker pounces on a mistake by Turnbull and feeds Hincapie, whose first-time shot nestles into the net off Montgomery.
Hart keeps Celtic in the game with a pair of saves from Diaby. Leverkusen shifted the ball really well in the build-up, exploiting Diaby's searing pace in off the right-hand side.
Hradecky's at it again. The Finn does really well to react to Starfelt's deflected strike following a corner. Leverkusen holding firm in the face of some relentless Celtic pressure right now.
HRADECKY TO THE RESCUE!
Kyogo runs at Tah, shifting one way and then the other to open up a shooting chance. He should score, but Hradecky sticks out a boot to turn it behind for a corner.
Leverkusen power forward with Diaby. Wirtz has a crack, but Hart's equal to it. He was offside, in any case.
Montgomery stumbles under Tah's challenge, but gets the ball to Rogic, who fails to test Hreadecky with his strike.
ALARIO ON THE PROWL
Demirbay pulls the strings in midfield, before a ball is launched long for Alario. He evades Vickers, but Ralston comes across to clear. The Argentine would have been in, there!
Moussa Diaby's moving gingerly. Could be a hamstring for the Leverkusen winger - let's hope he can shake it off.
Celtic survive a teasing ball into the box. Paulinho was inches away from applying the killer touch at the far post. The hosts look shaky at the back.
TAH TO THE RESCUE
Furuhashi pounces on an errant pass. He rounds Hradecky, but Tah intervenes to make a goal-saving challenge. McGregor's strike from the ensuing corner goes just over. What a start in Glasgow!
GOAL RULED OUT!
Leverkusen have made an electric start. Not long after a warning shot from Demirbay, Wirtz takes aim from 18 yards. It's an awkward one for Joe Hart, bouncing up in front of the Celtic stopper. Lucas Alario turns it home, but he's offside.
Celtic put on quite the light show ahead of kick-off. We have a real atmosphere at Celtic Park...
WATCH: LEVERKUSEN 1-0 MainzRelive how Wirtz and Frimpong inspired Leverkusen to their fourth Bundesliga win of the season.
Jeremie Frimpong played with Jadon Sancho at youth level for Manchester City, before winning a domestic treble with Celtic. The Dutchman needed time to bed in after switching to Leverkusen in January, but has looked the part on the right-hand side of Seoane's defence so far this term. This marks his eighth start of a possible nine - he already has four assists.
WATCH: FLORIAN WIRTZ UNDER THE TACTICAL MICROSCOPEDubbed Kai Havertz's successor, Florian Wirtz is arguably ahead of the curve. The 18-year-old made history as the youngest player to reach 10 Bundesliga goals last weekend. He's now scored in five straight games, including his effort on Europa League Matchday 1. He also has four assists to show for his first six outings of the competitive campaign.
THE SEASON SO FAR
Leverkusen have made a flying start to the Bundesliga campaign under Gerardo Seoane. They've won four of their six league games, only losing to an Erling Haaland-inspired Borussia Dortmund, and sit second in the standings. Celtic, meanwhile, dropped points for the fourth time in seven Scottish Premiership assignments in their 1-1 draw with Dundee United. They lost 4-3 to Real Betis just days earlier, despite taking a 2-0 lead. Leverkusen, on the other hand, came from behind to beat Ferencvaros in their Europa League opener.
MORE ON THOSE TEAMS
Centre-back Odilon Kossounou misses out after going off in the weekend win over Mainz, but is expected to face Bielefeld on Sunday. Piero Hincapie, his replacement against Mainz, comes in. Paulinho replaces Karim Bellarabi in attack, while Lucas Alario is rotated in for Patrik Schick in the lone striker's role. As for Celtic, captain Callum McGregor and attacker Kyogo Furuhashi are both surprise inclusions, having been rated doubtful ahead of the game. Needless to say it's a big sign of the respect head coach Ange Postecoglou is showing Leverkusen that he's risked them.
LEVERKUSEN STARTING LINE-UP
Hradecky (c) - Frimpong, Tah, Hincapie, Bakker - Aranguiz, Demirbay - Diaby, Wirtz, Paulinho - Alario
Lunev, Neutgens, Retsos, Kossounou, Amiri, Schick, Sinkgraven, Adli
CELTIC STARTING LINE-UP
Hart - Ralston, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt, Montgomery - Rogic, McGregor (c), Turnbull - Abada, Furuhashi, Jota
Barkas, Bain, Scales, Bitton, Giakoumakis, Ajeti, Soro, McCarthy, Urhoghide, Shaw, Welsh