Here are our top Celtic v FK Sarajevo betting tips. The second legs of the Champions League first round qualifying matches take place this midweek before we get into the Europa League ties on Thursday. It’s a busy few days for football fans and although it may not be the most glamorous fixture list we’ll see this season, it does serve as an indication that the new season is fast approaching.
It’ll also be music to the ears of football punters who will welcome the chance to place an accumulator bet, targeting a big price pay-out for small stakes. Accas remain the favourite bet with followers of the beautiful game and landing one this early in the season could cover your bets until the end of the season, with a few shrewd selections.
Celtic Have a Two-Goal Cushion
We get started on Tuesday, but our game of note takes place on Wednesday at 7.45pm and that’s where we’ll focus our interests. Celtic take on Premier League BH champions FK Sarajevo in the second leg and they do so with the benefit of a two-goal cushion behind them, as well as three away goals on side. The Hoops claimed a crucial win on the road last Tuesday, despite following behind early in the contest, and that means they need only see the game out to ensure their name is in the hat for the second qualifying round.
The Giants set-up to hit their opponents on the counter-attack last week and it worked when Oremus hit an opening goal with 29 minutes on the clock. It came against the run of play and was a bit of a shock to the Celtic fans who had made the trip, as well as those watching the live TV pictures back home courtesy of Premier Sports, but it seemed to jolt Celtic to life. The Glaswegians have suffered some embarrassing upsets in this competition over the years but weren’t in the mood to fall victim to another shocker.
Johnston, who was the standout player of the evening for the green and white hoops, sent home an equaliser on 35 to send the teams into the break level at 1-1. Whatever was said by returning manager Neil Lennon at half time obviously had the desired effect as the visitors re-emerged from the tunnel a more determined side. They took the lead through Eduard shortly after the re-start and looked on-course to take a 2-1 lead back to Glasgow but a third from Sinclair near the end buried to tie, ensuring Celtic put one foot in the next round.
Hoops Hit the Ground Running
Celtic are still some way off peak fitness and it was obvious at times they are a club in the early stages of pre-season but they had to hit the ground running in this competition and fans will be delighted to see them do just that. The players made themselves available to receive the ball, were determined in the middle of the park and passed the ball around with confidence, despite being under pressure from a large home support.
Scott Brown was as reliable as ever in the midfield and Celtic supporters will be pleased their captain chose to stay with the champions, knocking back a big money move abroad to see out the latter part of his career in the sunshine. No one could’ve blamed Brown if he did go as he has been a fantastic servant to both Celtic and Scotland over the years. Mikey Johnson was composed when scoring an important goal and seems to have a big future ahead of him.
Manager Neil Lennon labelled it a brilliant win in Sarajevo and, despite his side being caught on the counter and falling behind, he was on the money. The Bhoys must be given the credit they deserve for battling to a deserved victory at a difficult venue, especially after losing an early goal. The challenge was made much tougher at 0-1 but there’s character and a winning mentality in this Celtic side and they showed that again on Tuesday. 2-1 would’ve been a fantastic result but to score a third late in the day to give themselves a cushion made a real difference and the Scots are now within touching distance of a place in round two. It’s theirs to lose and that’s all fans can ask.
Sarajevo Blew It
FK Sarajevo know their best chance at causing an upset in this qualifier came at home. They had to meet Celtic head-on, push them back and take the chances that came their way. Only then would they have the chance to take a lead to Glasgow. They set-up to hit on the counter and although that allowed Celtic’s best players to move with the ball, it did work when Oremus had supporters celebrating inside the first 30 minutes of the game.
With one goal lead and home advantage it was up to The Giants to push forward against a Celtic team lacking match fitness, but they appear to have bottled it, conceding an equaliser inside six minutes. That undone all their good work and gave Celtic, not only an away goal, but the belief they could go on and win the match. That’s exactly what The Hoops did and although they were impressive in doing so, Sarajevo played a part in their own downfall.
Judging by what we saw last week, Celtic should win at home with a bit to spare and traders agree with that notion. The locals have been marked up as 1/6 favourites and that’s better than the 1/10 you’ll get with some other firms. Sarajevo are as big as 20/1 with the draw at 13/2 (Bet365). We’re taking a comfortable outing for The Bhoys and will back them to win to nil at 5/6 – best price when getting your stake money down at Ladbrokes.