Celtic routed KR Reykjavik 6-0 in a desperately one-sided Champions League first qualifying round clash, with on-loan attacker Moham Elyounoussi scoring twice at Celtic Park.
In a one-legged tie played behind closed doors, Neil Lennon’s side showed the Icelandic outfit no mercy. Elyounoussi broke the deadlock after only seven minutes after going round keeper Beitir Olafsson, before striker Odsonne Édouard pressured defender Arnor Adalsteinsson into an own goal 10 minutes later.
Defender Christopher Jullien headed in Celtic’s third before half-time, before Greg Taylor scored his first Celtic goal early in the second half. The left-back climbed highest to head home Hatem Abd Elhamed’s cross, and Édouard flashed in a fifth on 71 minutes. The French forward skipped past three defenders before finishing decisively past Olafsson.
Édouard was then replaced by debutant Albian Ajeti, who recently arrived from West Ham. Reykjavik’s Palmi Rafn Palmason had the ball in the net only for the offside flag to be correctly raised, before Elyounoussi slid home his second goal from substitute Olivier Ntcham’s pass in stoppage time.
Celtic will host either Hungarian side Ferencvaros or Swedish champions Djurgårdens, who meet on Wednesday, in the second qualifying round next week.
David Healy’s Linfield side pushed Legia Warsaw all the way in Poland but were left to rue Kirk Millar’s red card and José Kanté’s subsequent late winner for the hosts.
The Northern Irish side had the best chance of the first half, Mark Stafford’s header forcing former Celtic keeper Artur Boruc into a fine save. The game turned when Millar collected a needless second yellow card for a late challenge on Luquinhas.
Guinean winger Kanté, on as a second-half substitute, fired home from the edge of the area with eight minutes to play but 10-man Linfield almost forced extra time, only for Christy Mazinga’s shot to come back off the post.
In Tuesday’s other first-round games, Red Star Belgrade thrashed Gibraltar’s Europa FC 5-0, Belarusian champions Dynamo Brest beat Astana 6-3 in a free-scoring contest and Qarabag overcame North Macedonia’s FK Sileks 4-0.