With temperatures across the UK and Ireland reaching in excess of 30 degrees it is hard to believe that this week sees the return of Champions League action.
While we are still months away from seeing the likes of Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Manchester United strut their midweek stuff, clubs from the so called lesser leagues will start their European journeys in earnest at the height of summer.
SPL champions Celtic are one such side and Neil Lennon’s men will cut short their pre-season to take on their Northern Irish counterparts Cliftonville at Solitude in Belfast on Wednesday night.
The Hoops are the clear favourite to gain the upper hand despite being the away side and are priced at 1/4 to seize the initiative in the first leg.
Cliftonville can be backed at 11/1 and the draw offers odds of 9/2 but Tommy Breslin’s side has struggled in their few Champions League games thus far and a comfortable victory for Lennon’s Bhoys looks on the cards.
The Reds have played just two matches in this competition, losing both, and conceded a whopping 13 goals in that time while scoring just one.
As such, the match betting market could well be overlooked by those looking for greater value in favour of 109 other markets being offered by Ladbrokes.
With a healthy helping of goals on the agenda, many could be tempted to back Celtic – who scored an average of 2.42 goals per game in the SPL last year – to score 2-3 goals in the Goal Crazy market at evens.
The Celtic Park outfit are priced at 12/5 to score four or more goals against the hosts, while the jewel in the crown appears to be found in the anytime correct score offering.
The gulf in class is there for all to see and while Celtic look nailed on to find the back of the net at regular intervals, their rivals lack the fire power to pose a real threat to the visitors.
As such the 7/4 on Celtic to be winning 3-0 at any time during the match could well attract a great deal of attention.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.