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Celtic rescued a point hosting St Johnstone at the weekend as they scored late on, but the best thing that can be said for the performance was that it was the first time in five outings where they’d limited their opponents to just a single strike.
The Hoops have conceded at least twice in all five Europa League group stage matches to date, shipping exactly four goals in defeats to Sparta Prague (twice) and Milan in their most recent appearances.
Although the Hoops are a desperately poor W2-D4-L6 since the October international break, they have typically been finding the net, being denied a goal just once in their past 11.
In fact, they’ve scored in 43 of their past 45 matches, so should if nothing else trouble their visitors’ backline.
They have however registered just a single clean sheet from their last 11 matches in Europe from the group stages onwards, with both teams scoring in all but one of these games.
Lille -0.25 Asian Handicap
Both teams often score in Lille’s matches too and it’s happened in nine of their past 11 matches, which includes four of their five outings in Europe this term as they drew 2-2 with Celtic in the reverse fixture.
Christophe Galtier’s men don’t however concede by the bucket load and they’ve let in more than one goal just twice from 18 appearances this season, going an impressive W10-D7-L1 as they even trail PSG domestically by a mere two points.
Lille To Win And Both Teams To Score
With impressive form behind them and as the only ones with something riding on the game, Lille can be expected to get something from this clash.
Although they do draw a few games, they’ll be inclined to take the handbrakes off a little with a point making no difference to their chances of topping the group.
Celtic last tasted victory at Celtic Park back in September, losing four of five games there since, as each of these defeats came by minimum two-goal margins.
Lille’s lack of clean sheets leaves us wary of the handicap, but Celtic are certainly in crisis mode and there for the taking.