Udinese v Celtic: End of the road for The Bhoys

early suggestions are that goal-machine, Antonio Di Natale, will make the starting XI

Celtic travel to Italy to take on Udinese at the Stadio Fruili this Thursday evening. The men from Glasgow have a daunting task ahead and must take all three points if they are to progress to the knockout stages of the Europa League.

If you take statistics seriously, then they suggest that a home victory is probable. Celtic have never won a game on Italian soil and have only recorded one win in their last 32 European away games (two if you include the 0-3 victory over FC Sion). In contrast, Udinese are currently on a nine match winning streak at home and are growing in confidence week-by-week.

The Bianconeri have tended to field so-called ‘weakened teams’ in the Europa League this season, although this hasn’t stopped them amassing eight points from their five group games thus far, including one point in the reverse fixture back in September. I believe Francesco Guidolin will once again ring the changes, but we should still see a fairly strong line-up and early suggestions are that goal-machine, Antonio Di Natale, will make the starting XI on Thursday. If this is the case then odds of 4/1 that SkyBet are offering look very appealing and are more than generous. Both Giampiero Pinzi and Damiano Feronetti should return, after serving recent domestic bans, however, Maurizio Domizzi remains on the sidelines.

Neil Lennon has admitted that defender Adam Mathews is a doubt for Thursdays game, but the Irishman could welcome back Thomas Rogne and Kelvin Wilson, although a place on the bench may be more likely than a starting role for both defenders. At the opposite end of the pitch, Georgios Samaras has been in fine form recently and is likely to make Lennon’s starting XI, as he so often does in the ‘big games’. Celtic know that if they are to qualify, they must score and young winger, James Forrest, may be the man capable of doing just that. The 20-year-old is having a fantastic campaign and will once again be trying to prove his worth to the squad. Bet365 are offering a massive 6/1 on Forrest scoring anytime.

Udinese will be looking to grab an early goal, which will no doubt pile the pressure on to the visitors. If this is the case, then it could be a long night for the travelling fans. The Italians should have more than enough to see off Celtic - the last remaining Scottish side - and send them crashing out of Europe.

Recommended Bets

Udinese to win @ 8/13 with Betfred

Antonio Di Natale to score first goal @ 4/1 with Sky Bet

Written By:- Richard Hodge (About our Authors)
Posted on:- 15/12/2011 - 10:02 AM
Filed in:- Europa League Betting News


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