A YOUNG Celtic side captained by Albian Ajeti defeated an experienced Sheffield Wednesday team in their first pre-season friendly under new manager Ange Postecoglou in Wales this afternoon

Postecoglou handed starts to youngsters Adam Montgomery, Dane Murray, Kerr McInroy and Owen Moffat at Dragon Park in Newport.

Vasilis Barkas, Stephen Welsh, Ewan Henderson, Anthony Ralston, Ismaila Soro and Ajeti joined them in the starting line-up.

There was also a first appearance for Liam Shaw, the English midfielder who moved to Glasgow for a nominal development fee from Wednesday in the summer, in Gwent.

Darren Moore, the Hillsborough outfit’s manager, fielded Scotland internationalists Barry Bannan, Liam Palmer and Callum Paterson in his team. Josh Windass, the ex-Rangers midfielder, also featured.

But Celtic, who lined up against their English League One rivals in a 4-1-4-1 formation with Soro sitting between the defence and midfield, came from behind to clinch a 3-1 victory thanks to Ajeti and Moffat goals and a late strike from substitute Odsonne Edouard.  

Bannan intercepted a pass from the Ivorian in the opposition half in the third minute and supplied Palmer outside him.

The right back cut inside and threaded a diagonal ball to Windass in the Celtic penalty box. His team mate slotted beyond Barkas and into the bottom right corner.  

The Parkhead club responded well in a game that was split into three 30 minute periods and came close to drawing level twice in the opening half an hour.

Shaw had a good claim for a penalty ignored by the referee after being barged over by Windass and Moffat also hit the side netting with a shot.

In the first minute of the second 30 Ajeti restored parity when he controlled a delivery from Henderson, held off Sam Hutchinson and fired beyond Joe Wildsmith.

The Swiss forward, who struggled for both game time and goals after moving to Celtic in a £5m transfer from West Ham last summer, required medical attention soon after netting when he was the victim of a crude challenge. But he recovered and put in a powerful shift up front by himself.

Shaw, the 20-year-old Englishman who was a regular starter for Wednesday in the Championship in the second half of the 2020/21 campaign, impressed ahead of Soro. The 6ft 3in youngster was a physical presence in the middle of the park, worked hard and was always eager to get on the ball and drive upfield.  

Scott Bain came on for Barkas in the Celtic after 45 minutes and Cameron Dawson took over from Wildsmith between the sticks for Wednesday.

Dawson was helpless to prevent Moffat from netting in the 56th minute – the 19-year-old’s first-time right foot shot from the edge of his area left him with no chance.  

At the start of the last half an hour Postecoglou made several changes – with Edouard replacing Ajeti in attack.

Lee O’Connor, Leo Hjelde, Ben McPherson, Luca Connell, Ewan Otoo, Scott Robertson, Jonathan Afolabi, Barry Coffey also got run outs. Edouard rounded off the victory at the death.