Kick-off: 1900, 14/08/2018
Stadium: OAKA Spiros Louis
Celtic’s bid to reach the Champions League group stage for a third straight season is set to go right down to the wire when they visit AEK Athens.
The Hoops will travel to Greece on level terms following last week’s 1-1 stalemate at Parkhead, when their opponents were reduced to 10 men in the 57th minute.
Another close encounter is on the cards in the return fixture, especially as AEK have drawn their last four European home games at OAKA Spiros Louis.
We reckon 39/20 for another such result at the end of normal time is the way to go with our initial AEK Athens vs Celtic prediction.
A Look At AEK Athens’ Betting Odds
Celtic midfielder Callum McGregor drove in a 17th-minute opener in Glasgow but Victor Klonaridis bagged a breakaway equaliser just before half-time.
AEK were reduced to 10 men in the 57th minute when Konstantinos Galanopoulos picked up a second yellow card and they had to soak up plenty of pressure after that.
However, the Greek title holders held firm to head home as slight favourites to progress.
New boss Marinos Ouzounidis said: “It was a very good result for us but nothing is done. It is important that we are better next week.
“We were better at the beginning of the second half, but after the red card things changed.
“It was normal to deal with more pressure and it was not possible for us to get so many counter-attacks. The possibilities are now in our favour.”
A Look At Celtic’s Betting Odds
Celtic can be forgiven for losing at Hearts in the Scottish Premiership on Saturday, as this match must have been a big distraction.
Brendan Rodgers will take heart from two previous rock-solid away results in this competition, with the Hoops winning 3-0 at Alashkert and drawing 0-0 at Rosenborg.
He reflected on the first leg: “There was only that one error we made just before half-time, and if we were sat here at 1-0, we would be talking about a fantastic performance.
“We started the game so well. Our shape, our pressing was at a high level and we were in control of the game until we conceded.
“It is still very much in the balance. Of course, it swings to them as they are at home, but we certainly know we have the quality to go and perform.
“We knew they were a good side but we proved that we are also a good side and can go over there and get a result. We can score over there, I don’t think there is any question of that.”
We agree with those words and feel that 21/20 for both teams to score is worth adding to our AEK Athens vs Celtic betting tips.
CELTIC 1-1 AEK ATHENS – Callum McGregor + Viktor Klonaridis
Previous head-to-head: N/A
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