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Celtic: Predicted XI to face Riga in Europa League tie

Celtic: Predicted XI to face Riga in Europa League tie - Celtic News

Celtic beat Livingston 3-2 in the Scottish Premiership at the weekend, which was a big result as it put them only one point behind the league leaders and if they win their game in hand, they can go top, per SPFL.

However they will be turning their attention away from the division and focusing on Europe, as they face a tough tie in the Europa League third qualifying round against Latvian champions Riga FC.

Neil Lennon has already come out and said that the match will be tricky as Riga will be a ‘tough team to break down‘, and with the Hoops getting knocked out of the Champions League qualifiers earlier this campaign, they will not want a repeat in the Europa League.

Here is the TT predicted XI, which sees Lennon make one change from the side that won against Livingston at the weekend.

Defender Christopher Jullien is still not fully fit, and Lennon has admitted that he has had to leave the defender behind as he recovers from a back problem. This will obviously be a big blow for the Hoops, and it showed at the weekend as they leaked two goals without him in the back line. This will most likely see the back three not change from the Premiership match, with Kristoffer Ajer, Shane Duffy and Hatem Abd Elhamed all starting.

Midfielder Callum McGregor shone last weekend, picking up a 7.6 rating and scoring one goal, per SofaScore whilst also making four key passes and winning two ground duels, and Lennon will be hoping for more of the same from the Scotsman.

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Lennon could easily make a slight tactical change, as at the weekend he rested Odsonne Edouard, who has scored four goals and assisted one in the league this season, per Transfermarkt, so that he was fully fit to face Riga. Ryan Christie was in his position and performed brilliantly, picking up an 8.5 rating, per SofaScore, as well as a goal and an assist.

Therefore the Hoops could replace Edouard with 24 year-old Olivier Ntcham, who struggled against Livingston and picked up a 6.7 rating, and pair Edouard upfront with Albian Ajeti, who now has four goals and one assist in five league games since his arrival this summer, per Transfermarkt. This would mean Christie sits just behind the two forwards to provide them with a lot of creativity.

Celtic fans, what are your thoughts on this line-up? Comment below!

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Article title: Celtic: Predicted XI to face Riga in Europa League tie

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