By now, Celtic fans have accepted that Brendan Rodgers’ side are most probably not going through or even finishing third in their group in the UEFA Champions League. It would be a positive step to get a win in the competition though. It has been quite some time since the Hoops won at this level.
Their last win in the Champions League was against Anderlecht. It was during Rodgers’ first spell as manager of the club. It has really been that long.
Their two remaining games in the competition are against Lazio away in Rome and then Feyenoord at Parkhead. Up next is Maurizio Sarri’s team.
In their previous meeting, Celtic were the better team between the two to be very honest. But they just could not find a second goal, with a good strike from Luis Palma being ruled out late in the match. Ultimately, Pedro would grab a 95th minute for Lazio against the run of play.
Lazio boss Maurizio Sarri makes fantastic Celtic claim
Sarri is not taking Celtic lightly at all and only had positive things to say about Rodgers’ team before they end up meeting in the Champions League in midweek. As reported by Football Scotland, the Lazio manager said:
"“Celtic are a good team, they have good rhythm, decent technical qualities. They are not an easy team to beat.”"
Getting praise from opposition managers is fine and the Hoops have played some pretty good football along the way too. But it is time to convert those performances into results. At some point, they will have to, if they are to make any kind of progress in Europe.
The game against Lazio might be the perfect opportunity to do that. Sarri’s side have well and truly struggled this season. They have lost two and drawn one of their previous three Serie A games. Perhaps their best results this season have come in the Champions League, having registered wins over Celtic and Feyenoord.