Premiership giants Celtic will be looking to get their European adventure off to the right start when they welcome Italian heavyweights AC Milan to Parkhead on Thursday. The Hoops are coming into this tie on the back of an embarrassing defeat at the hands of fierce rivals Rangers, which will make getting something out of this tie an absolute necessity. As much as they would want to do that though, getting anything out of a visit by the Serie A leaders will definitely be a much tougher task than the one they had last weekend.
The Hoops have had several injury concerns to deal with over recent weeks, with the international break completely going against Neil Lennon’s plans for the team. Multiple key names like Nir Bitton, Hatem Abd Elhamed and Ryan Christie were all required to enter quarantine, while Christopher Jullien picked up an untimely injury as well. Although the latter is likely to make his return, no update has been provided on the status of any of the other names mentioned above. Odsonne Edouard is another player whose return date is a question mark.
Predicted XI: Barkas; Jullien, Duffy, Ajer; Frimpong, McGregor, Ntcham, Brown, Laxalt; Ajeti, Elyounoussi.
The Serie A club, unlike the Celts, don’t have too many first-team players missing from action, with the biggest injury concern coming in the form of prolific Croatian international striker Ante Rebic. Mateo Musacchio is another player who has been ruled out of contention for this tie. In terms of players who could still play a part, young defender Matteo Gabbia is one of the names on the list, while Leo Duarte’s current situation remains a glaring doubt as well.
Predicted XI: Donnarumma; Conti, Kjaer, Romagnoli; Dalot, Tonali, Krunic, Diaz; Hauge, Ibrahimovic, Castillejo
Here Is The Celtic Vs AC Milan Tactical Preview:
Celtic Vs AC Milan Tactical Preview
The Hoops didn’t have the most fluent of games on the weekend against Rangers, and a similar performance could see them getting absolutely dismantled by an in-form Milan side. The Bhoys will be forced to drop deep and do a lot of defending, as Neil Lennon’s side doesn’t currently have the firepower required to give this Milan defence a hard enough time. The pace of Frimpong and Milan loanee Laxalt will be important in attack, as Albian Ajeti and Mohamed Elyounoussi will be quite isolated up front for the Celts.
The Italian outfit are expected to dominate the possession in this tie, and unless the Hoops defenders put up an inspired display, they will be presented with ample chances to score. Almost matching up with Celtic in terms of formation, Milan will also be able to use the width provided by the wing-backs but will have to be wary of the Celts having an additional player in midfield. Using the wingers to double up on the Celtic wing-backs will be essential to them finding a way through to Vasilis Barkas’ goal consistently.
With Edouard and Christie both seemingly unavailable for selection, the onus does fall onto the shoulders of Albian Ajeti to produce the goods for the Celts. The Swiss striker will have to put himself about to have any chance of finding the net in what promises to be a strenuous affair for the Scottish champions.
For all the quality that this Milan side possesses, finding a way over the Celtic defence is something they’re capable of doing. To that effect, Sandro Tonali is undoubtedly the most important name in the Italian club’s extremely well-stocked roster of world-class players.