Kovacevic: 'Celtic did not deserve to win'

Celtic kicked off their Champions League qualifying campaign with a routine 3-1 victory over Bosnian minnows FK Sarajevo on Tuesday night, with goals from Michael Johnston, Odsonne Edouard and Scott Sinclair sparing the visitors blushes after the hosts initially took the lead just before the half-hour mark.

It looks all but certain that the Bhoys will have enough in the tank to finish the job in the return leg next Wednesday at Celtic Park, with manager Neil Lennon set to rest a few of his key players ahead of the club's opening SPL fixture against St. Johnstone on 3 August.

Despite a nervy start, Celtic looked in control for the majority of Tuesday night's clash and finished the match well with a strong second-half performance; all in all, it was a deserved victory.

Not everyone felt the same way, however, with Sarajevo's goalkeeper - Vladan Kovačević - claiming that the Scottish champions did not deserve their victory at the Koševo City Stadium.

"In my opinion, Celtic did not deserve to win because they didn't create that many chances," said the 21-year-old shot-stopper.

"I think we were shaken when they equalised so quickly after we had taken the lead. We were unlucky they scored a third goal. But in fairness to them, they kept the ball well in possession and I congratulate them on winning."

Kovačević's team-mate, defender Besim Šerbečić, insists that his side are still in the tie despite finding them two goals behind the Scot's.

"Of course it will be very difficult for us at Celtic, but you never know what can happen in football. We will certainly not surrender," he said.

"I feel sorry we could not do more for the fans because they provided a tremendous atmosphere.

"We have to acknowledge Celtic are a really good team. Their second goal stunned us. But we are proud of our efforts because we gave our all," he added.

Sarajevo captain Krste Velkoski said that Celtic "punished" them for their mistakes.

"Celtic are a big team who play in Europe a lot. They punished any mistakes we made," said the Macedonian front man.

"We started the game at a great pace, but we weren't able to sustain it. Now we have to try and gain revenge against them in Glasgow."

d

⚡️ Bet £10 Get £50 in FREE ACCAS! ⚡️
Min stake £10, min odds 2.0. Only deposits made using Credit/Debit Cards or ApplePay will qualify. Free bets are awarded after the qualifying bet has settled, valid for 30 days, must be used on multiples with 3+ legs. Max £50 in free bets. T&Cs apply.
Claim Bonus
🔴 Bet £5 & Get £30 FREE BETS! 🔴
FIRST SINGLE & E/W BET ONLY. ODDS OF 1/1 OR GREATER. 3 X £10 BET TOKENS. FREE BET STAKES NOT INCLUDED IN RETURNS. FREE BETS ARE NON WITHDRAWABLE. NO FREE BET EXPIRY. ELIGIBILITY RESTRICTIONS. FURTHER T&CS APPLY. 18+. BEGAMBLEAWARE.ORG
Claim Bonus
🏆 £20 Risk Free First Bet - Money Back in CASH 🏆
New customers only, limited to one per person. If you’ve previously had a Paddy Power account, you will not qualify for the offer. Place your first bet on any Sportsbook market and if it loses we will refund your stake in CASH. Max refund for this offer is £/€20. Only deposits made using Cards or Paypal will qualify for this promotion. T&Cs apply.
Claim Bonus
⚡️Get up to £100 in Bet Credits⚡️
New Customers only. Up to £100* in Bet Credits. Sign up, deposit £5* or more to your account and bet365 will match your qualifying deposit in Bet Credits when you place qualifying bets to the same value and they are settled. Min odds/bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. T&Cs, time limits & exclusions apply.
Claim Bonus
😍 Get up to £50 in Free Bets 😍
T&Cs: New users only. Min deposit £20. Place qualifying bets of £20 to £50 in first 7 days after deposit to unlock free bets. Free bet rewarded as 4 free bets that total the first deposit amount. Min odds 1/1 3+ legs & expire in 7 days. Winnings credited in cash. Full T&Cs apply
Claim Bonus
🏆 BET £20 & GET YOUR STAKE BACK AS CASH IF YOU LOSE! 🏆
New customers only. Minimum odds 1/5 (1.2). If you place a multiple at least one selection must meet the min odds requirement. Max £20 refund. Only deposits made using Cards or Applepay qualify. Qualifying bet must be placed and settled within 30 days of account opening. T&Cs apply.
Claim Bonus
🌟 Bet £5 & Get £30 in Bonuses 🌟
New Customers only. Deposit and place a £5 qualifying bet at odds of 2.00 or greater within 7 days of opening a new account; excludes cashed out bets. Receive 2x £10 Sports/Virtual Sports Free Bets, valid on set events only at odds 2.00 or greater, expires in 7 days, plus a £10 Casino Bonus, expires in 7 days. Wager the Casino Bonus 35x to withdraw winnings. Payment Cards only. Geographical Restrictions and T&Cs Apply. Please Gamble Responsibly
Claim Bonus
100% Matched Free Bet up to £10!
New UK customers only. £10 Min Deposit. 100% matched free bet on your first deposit of £10. 1 x wagering at odds of 1.75+ to unlock Free Bets. Debit Card & Paypal deposits only. This offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. Full Terms apply.
Claim Bonus
When The Fun Stops. Stop.