MX23RW : Saturday, December 4 13:51:55| >> :120:14160:14160:
Dec 10, 2020 at 8pm UK at Celtic Park
CelticCeltic
3-2
LilleLille
Jullien (21'), McGregor (28' pen.), Turnbull (75')
Klimala (58'), Duffy (70'), Soro (90+2')
FT(HT: 2-1)
Ikone (24'), Weah (71')
Ikone (2'), Xeka (58'), David (84'), Andre (90+7')

Preview: Celtic vs. Lille - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Europa League clash between Celtic and Lille, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Celtic host Lille in the Europa League on Thursday night hoping to end a run of five matches in all competitions without a victory.

Meanwhile, the French side travel to Celtic Park for the first time knowing that a win would be enough to top Group H ahead of AC Milan.


Match preview

Celtic manager Neil Lennon pictured on November 5, 2020© Reuters

Celtic suffered another disappointing result on Sunday as they had to come from behind to draw 1-1 at home to St Johnstone in the Scottish Premiership.

The Hoops have now won just two of their last 12 matches in all competitions and the pressure is building on manager Neil Lennon to turn their fortunes around.

Despite their poor form, Celtic have publicly backed Lennon this week and have stated that they believe "Neil and his management team are best placed to turn the team's performances around" and that "progress will be reviewed in the new year".

Those comments from the board will have pleased Lennon, giving him more time this month to address the team's problems.

The Hoops' final Europa League match this Thursday is one that Lennon could really do without, as they have already been eliminated from the competition, losing four of their five matches in Group H.

Celtic's only Europa League point this campaign was collected in the 2-2 draw in the reverse fixture against Lille in October, a game that saw them throw away a two-goal lead.

The Hoops have lost three consecutive home matches in the Europa League this season and have never lost four in a row in Europe at Celtic Park.

Lille head coach Christophe Galtier pictured on November 5, 2020© Reuters

Lille managed to secure a slender 2-1 victory over Monaco last weekend as second half strikes from Jonathan David and Yusuf Yazici earned the French side their seventh league win of the campaign.

Les Dogues have lost only one game all season – a 3-2 defeat away at Brest – and are unbeaten from their last five matches in all competitions, however Christophe Galtier's side had drawn four of their last five matches by a 1-1 scoreline prior to their victory against Monaco.

Nevertheless, Lille are just two points behind Paris Saint-Germain at the top of Ligue 1 and face the French champions in just a few weeks' time.

Lille now turn their attention back to the Europa League, where they have already booked their place in the last 32 following a narrow 2-1 victory over Sparta Prague last week.

This will be the French side's first ever European away match in Scotland and a victory at Celtic Park would be enough for Lille to top Group H ahead of AC Milan in second place.

Celtic Europa League form: LDLLL
Celtic form (all competitions): WDLLLD

Lille Europa League form: WDWDW
Lille form (all competitions): LWDDWW


Team News

Lille's Sven Botman in action with Celtic's Olivier Ntcham in the Europa League on October 29, 2020© Reuters

Neil Lennon may decide to rest a few of his key players to keep them fresh for the weekend, as they cannot afford to slip further behind Rangers in the league.

Goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas, who last weekend started his first league match since October, is likely to keep his place in the side ahead of Scott Bain.

Winger James Forrest is Celtic's only injury concern ahead of Thursday's match.

Lille's Tiago Djalo is expected to continue at right-back with few other alternatives at present to replace Zeki Celik, who is ruled out injured.

Xeka, Benjamin Andre, Sven Botman and Domagoj Bradaric are all one booking away from missing their first knockout match, so Christophe Galtier will have some interesting decisions to make as to whether they feature against Celtic.

Midfielder Renato Sanches has not been involved in Lille's previous two matches but could be in line for a return to the side this week.

Burak Yilmaz, who scored twice in the 2-1 win over Sparta Prague, is likely to start up front alongside Canadian Jonathan David.

Celtic possible starting lineup:
Barkas; Abd Elhamed, Bitton, Duffy, Taylor; Brown, Turnbull, Ntcham; Christie, Klimala, Griffiths

Lille possible starting lineup:
Maignan; Djalo, Fonte, Botman, Reinildo; Ikone, Andre, Soumare, Bamba; Yilmaz, David


SM words green background

We say: Celtic 0-2 Lille

Lille have won both of their Europa League away matches in Group H, scoring seven goals in the process. The French side look stronger than their Scottish counterparts, who are likely to rest a few key players, and they should come away with another three points.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or draw in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Draw:data


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Celtic manager Neil Lennon pictured on November 5, 2020
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1RangersRangers15113133141936
2Celtic15102333102332
3Hearts1676325151027
4Dundee UnitedDundee Utd167451515025
5Motherwell167362024-424
6Hibernian145361718-118
7Aberdeen165381821-318
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9Dundee154471527-1216
10St Johnstone15357915-614
11Livingston153481222-1013
12Ross County152581927-811

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