Having been handed a massive Europa League reprieve by UEFA, Celtic will be looking to take their second chance with both hands and get through Group I.
The Bhoys were dumped out of the competition in the play-off round by Sion, but were reinstated when the Swiss side were booted out by the governing body for financial irregularities.
Celtic face tough opponents in their opener in the shape of La Liga side Atletico Madrid – but ones who have seen a couple of high-profile stars leave for pastures new.
One of those has been setting the Premier League south of the border alight – Neil Lennon will be very glad that Sergio Aguero will not be tormenting his side on Thursday evening.
Both sides have had contrasting starts to their domestic seasons, with Los Rojiblancos failing to win either of their two opening fixtures. But with only one goal scored in those games – by the opposition – expect that to change.
Celtic sit in a familiar position at the top of the SPL after winning five of their first
six, but their form hasn’t been replicated in European competition.
Bwin’s 3Way football betting market shows Atleti as 9/20 favourites with home advantage, while the draw is at 16/5 and Celtic are rated as 6/1 outsiders.
My thoughts on this clash are that goals may be hard to come by and maybe siding with a draw half-time and the hosts prevailing after 90 minutes may be the route to go in this one.
The price for that occurring is 13/4, while 0-0 at the interval is 11/5.
A successful £25 free bet, available to punters who sign up for a bwin account, on the latter selection would return £80 if the prediction proves correct.
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