Celtic were having a dismal run in Europe until their group stage encounter against Bundesliga big boys RB Leipzig which ended in a 2-1 victory for the hosts at Celtic Park. The Hoops, therefore, are pretty much back in contention to make it to the knockouts and should be upbeat ahead of their Thursday night Europa League fixture versus minnows Rosenborg BK at Lerkendal Stadium.
The Norwegian outfit holds a poor record against the Celts, managing only one win in nine previous meetings. They also lost the reverse fixture at Parkhead and are yet to open their account sitting rock bottom of their Group B standings. In-form Celtic should ensure three more points despite injury casualties and look to increase the odds of qualifying for the Round of 32.
Celtic should be boosted by the return of Tom Rogic who missed the weekend tie through a knee injury but is now available for selection as confirmed by manager Brendan Rodgers to BBC Sport.
Skipper Scott Brown is recovering well from a calf strain but the midweek tie would be way too soon for the veteran Scotsman. Daniel Arzani and Eboue Kouassi are ruled out for the season after rupturing their anterior cruciate ligament Injuries whereas Jozo Simunovic [ankle], Ajer [eye] and Cristian Gamboa [hamstring] – the defensive trio continues to be sidelined with their respective woes.
Rodgers has experimented plenty but found stability in a 4-2-3-1 that earned him persistent results of late. He must not alter the setup against the Norwegian outfit and should be demanding more aggression to their game before this massive away fixture.
Although understudy Scott Bain has hardly put a foot wrong in limited opportunities, the experience of Craig Gordon would be crucial between the sticks.
Right-back Mikael Lustig is having a contract conundrum but is tipped to retain his place despite his lack of form. Kieran Tierney, however, has been breathtaking on the other flank. The central defensive pair of Dedryck Boyata and Filip Benkovic are earning reliability with towering displays.
Rodgers has deployed versatile Callum McGregor as a deep-lying playmaker in the absence of Scott Brown. He should be partnered by the returning Tom Rogic, their Australian wizard, who should operate in an advanced role.
James Forrest is in blistering form down the right flank, and so is Ryan Christie who has been a revelation as the midfield attacker. Scott Sinclair is having a run of games on the left wing and must continue to impress with his cut insides, tricky runs and goal-scoring attributes.
Leigh Griffiths is back in action and found the net against Hamilton Accies on Saturday afternoon. But the Scotsman should make way for Odsonne Edouard who has emerged as the preferred ‘number 9’ option and the young Frenchman, a club-record transfer, would look to add more goals to his game against the European counterparts.