Celtic face Lazio on Matchday Two of the UEFA Champions League this evening under the lights at Paradise. The Scottish Champions were beaten by Feyenoord in the opening game of the Group Stages and will be hoping to post three points on the board. That would be Celtic’s first Champions League Group stages win since 2017.
The Italian visitors salvaged a point at home to Atletico Madrid in their opener with their goalkeeper Ivan Provedel ensuring a memorable night for himself on his Champions League debut with a brilliant header to give Lazio a point in Rome.
Calm before the storm!! Get in early tonight to roar on the Celts🍀
8pm KO gates open at 6pm.
South East corner thoroughfare will close between 6-6:40pm
London Rd will close to traffic at 6pm between Springfield Rd & Clyde Gateway pic.twitter.com/axm9fcvXij
— CELTIC FC SLO (@CelticFCSLO) October 4, 2023
Celtic Team News
Celtic go into the game with two suspensions carried over from defeat in Rotterdam. Central defender Gustaf Lagerbielke and midfielder Odin Thiago Holm are both out after receiving marching orders a fortnight ago.
Celtic welcome Joe Hart back, who missed the win at Fir Park through suspension. The Englishman will start despite Scott Bain’s impressive deputising performance that will ensure that he is on the bench.
In defence, Cameron Carter-Vickers could feature in what is a potentially huge boost for Celtic. The American was injured back in August and was not anticipated to return until later this month but Brendan Rodgers confirmed he was ahead of schedule and could feature. If Carter-Vickers doesn’t make it to start, it’ll likely be Nat Phillips and Liam Scales but this might be the night that Brendan Rodgers takes the gamble and throws Carter-Vickers into the fray.
Greg Taylor and Alistair Johnston will start in the full back berths and you can be sure that Callum McGregor will lead Celtic out and the skipper to be joined by both Matt O’Riley and Reo Hatate.
In attack, Kyogo will start through the middle with Daizen Maeda and we could see James Forrest start on the right for Celtic wing.
Predicted XI: Hart; Johnston, Carter-Vickers, Scales, Taylor; McGregor, O’Riley, Hatate; Forest, Kyogo and Maeda.
Tonight’s referee at Celtic Park for the Celtic v Lazio Champions League match will be Donatas Rumšas, a 35 year old who comes from Lithuania and has been registered with FIFA since 2016. Tonight will be his third Champions League match and he has also had the whistle in seven Europa League games. Rumšas has taken charge of around 166 games in Lithuania’s top flight, where he has earned the bulk of his experience.
Rumšas will be assisted by compatriots Aleksandr Radius and Dovydas Sužiedėlis with the fourth official being Robertas Valikonis – all four coming from Lithuania. The Video Assistant Referee will be the Spaniard Juan Martínez Munuera and he will be assisted by the Israeli Roi Reinshreiber.
Kick Off Time
The game kicks off at 8pm (Celtic Park time).
Celtic to win 1-0 with Kyogo grabbing the only goal of the game.
Where to Watch
The game will be shown exclusively on TNT Sports with coverage starting at 19:30pm. There will be no tifo display after Celtic failed to agree terms with the Green Brigade. This will put the onus on the Celtic support to conjure up a hostile atmosphere that will intimidate the visitors from Italy.
📌 Wednesday has arrived!
🤩 Which fixture are you most looking forward to…?
— Football on TNT Sports (@footballontnt) October 4, 2023
The teams last met in 2019 in the Europa League, where Neil Lennon’s team won 2-1 both in Glasgow and in Rome. Hopefully, we will have a repeat of the result tonight.
🟢⚪ Back in @ChampionsLeague action!
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) October 4, 2023
Join The Celtic Star at the Kerrydale on Thursday 19 October when we celebrate the launch of Matt Corr’s new book Majic, Stan and the King of Japan which tells the story of Gordon Strachan’s first season as Celtic manager. We’ll have the trophies that the Celtic team won that season plus well delighted welcome our special guests John Hartson and Stephen McManus, both stars of that Celtic team.
And we have other guests to be announced later this week plus there’s live music from the wonderful Boolavogue. Tickets are selling fast for what is sure to be a wonderful night of Celtic conversation and music and you can order below…