A defeat to Ajax dented Celtic’s hopes of reaching the Champions League knockout stages but with AC Milan losing to Barcelona, Neil Lennon’s team still have room for optimism going into the final two fixtures.
The Bhoys can be backed at 14/1 to do the seemingly impossible and while, on paper, they face a daunting task with games against AC Milan and Barcelona, the Glaswegian club could yet pull off a shock.
Next up for the Hoops is a home encounter with the Rossoneri who, after slipping to a 3-1 loss against Barca, are hardly in the best of form.
Il Diavolo have gone eight away games without a win, while their record in Europe’s premier competition is hardly much better with just three wins in the last 18 Champions League fixtures they have played away from the San Siro.
By contrast, Celtic’s home form has proven crucial to their European success, with Neil Lennon’s charges winning nine of the last 12 they have played at Celtic Park.
The Parkhead faithful will also have fond memories of their last home meeting with Milan too, which saw the Bhoys beat an AC Milan team that featured Kaka in his pomp.
Win by two goals or more and the SPFL leaders can head to the Nou Camp with a real chance of qualification.
Assuming that Ajax lose to the Catalans, then Celtic will be hoping Milan and the Dutch giants play out a draw in Italy – something that has occurred in two of their last three meetings.
You would have to go back to almost ten years to find the last time the Rossoneri beat the Eredivisie champions, who will most likely take a cautious approach as the away side.
For Celtic, meanwhile, an unlikely, but not impossible, win over a Barcelona team with nothing to play for would see them progress regardless of that result, while even a draw could see them qualify, provided Milan draw and lose by two or more at Parkhead.
The Catalans have a track record for taking their foot off the gas in the last group game too, having drawn with Benfica at the Nou Camp last term and after only just beating the Bhoys at home that year, the great escape could be on.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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