The 2001/02 group stages was the last time Celtic and Juventus met in the UEFA Champions League. Despite an outstanding 4-3 victory over Juventus in Celtic Park, the Hoops failed to emerge from the group stages, with Porto grabbing the runners-up spot in the group thanks to a 1-0 win over Rosenburg.
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Celtic Manager Neil Lennon played in the side that night against Juventus, and on Tuesday night’s first leg, he will pit his wits against counterpart Antonio Conte in an attempt to advance to the quarter-finals for the first time since the competition became known in its current format as the UEFA Champions League in 1992.
Juventus went unbeaten in the group stages, conceding only four goals in their six games. Celtic will find the Italian giants a tough side to break down, and I don’t think there will be many goals in this fixture. The Bhoys will see more of the ball than they did against Barcelona in their epic 2-1 victory back in November, but will have to defend just as impressively as they did that night.
Juventus have scored in each of their last 15 games in all competitions, and I can see that trend continuing on Tuesday night. In what should be a tightly fought contest, as many first-legs tend to be, the price of 6/1 available for a 1-0 win to Juventus is worth close consideration.
Celtic though, as they have proved on many Champions League nights at Celtic Park are not to be taken lightly. With the boisterous home crowd in full voice, the Hoops are capable of troubling any of Europe’s elite sides. The price of 7/1 for a 1-1 draw represents good value.
The ever-youthful Andrea Pirlo will be pulling the strings for Juve in the middle of the park. The dead-ball specialist will be on penalties and free-kicks for the visitors, and the price of 5/1 with Coral for him to score at anytime seems too big to pass on.
Juventus to win 1-0 @ 6/1 with Stan James
1-1 Draw @ 7/1 with Bet Victor
Andrea Pirlo to score anytime @ 5/1 with Coral
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