- Venue: Celtic Park
- Date: Tuesday, 12th February
- K/o: 19:45
Celtic have major doubts over Georgios Samaras and Efe Ambrose ahead of this last-16 Champions League encounter against Juventus.
Striker Samaras is struggling with a hamstring injury whilst Ambrose featured in the Final of the Africa Cup of Nations against Burkina Faso on Sunday and has only just this morning arrived back in Glasgow.
Left-back Emilio Izaguirre has recovered from his knee injury, however, and winger James Forrest is fit again after a hamstring problem.
Juventus midfielder Kwadwo Asamoah, who also featured in the Africa Cup of Nations for Ghana, is also a slight doubt.
Former Chelsea striker Nicolas Anelka could play after joining the Italians on-loan from Shanghai Shenhua.
From the agonising last-gasp defeat to Barcelona at Camp Nou in October, to the dizzying heights of defeating the Spanish Giants at Celtic Park a month later, Celtic’s path to the last-16 of the Champions League has been a storied one.
Neil Lennon’s men first had to defeat Swedish outfit Helsingborg to seal progress to the Group Stages of the Champions League, and there they found themselves pitted against Barcelona, Benfica and Spartak Moscow in Group G. Against the odds, the Scottish League Champions overcame all adversaries and succeeded where the likes of fellow British sides Chelsea and Manchester City failed in qualifying for the knock-out stages of this famous competition.
As for tonight’s opponents Juventus, they memorably thrashed a woefully inadequate Chelsea side 3-0 in Group E to qualify as group winners ahead of Shakhtar Donetsk a further place behind. Coincidentally, that win over Chelsea ultimately cost Roberto Di Matteo his job at Stamford Bridge.
A former Chelsea player could even be making an appearance for Juventus tonight in the mould of Nicolas Anelka, who has joined on-loan from Shanghai Shenhua. Manager Antonio Conte will be hoping the much-travelled Frenchman can help put an end to Celtic’s heroic and somewhat romantic rise to prominence in Europe tonight.
Foster, Matthews, Lustig, Wilson, Izaguirre, Brown, Wanyama, Ledley, Commons, Forrest, Hooper.
Buffon, Barzagli, Bonucci, Caceres, Lichtsteiner, Vidal, Pirlo, Marchisio, Asamoah, Anelka, Matri.
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This article was first posted on February 12, 2013