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Celtic vs Barcelona. UEFA Champions League Group C.

Celtic ParkAttendance57,937.

Celtic 0

    Barcelona 2

    • L Messi (24th minute, 55th minute pen)

    Celtic v Barcelona preview: Celtic eye victory to maintain Champions League hopes

    Barcelona's Lionel Messi steps out at Celtic Park for a training session
    Image: Barcelona's Lionel Messi steps out at Celtic Park for a training session

    Celtic host Barcelona in the Champions League on Wednesday night knowing even a victory may not be enough to keep them in the competition beyond Christmas.

    Celtic sit bottom of Group C on two points, and they stand a chance of reaching the knock-out stages only if they beat Barcelona and Manchester City fail to beat Borussia Monchengladbach.

    The Hoops lost 7-0 to Barcelona at the Nou Camp earlier in the season and manager Brendan Rodgers is hoping his side can make a better showing this time around.

    Lionel Messi celebrates after he scores his side's opener against Celtic in September
    Image: Barcelona beat Celtic 7-0 in the Champions League earlier this season

    "[It will be] a tough game, of course - they're a top class, world-class team with arguably the best front three that has ever played for Barcelona. But I would hope that it would be a different performance from ourselves," he told a pre-match press conference.

    Meanwhile, the La Liga champions will qualify for the last 16 with victory at Celtic Park, while they will finish top of the group if they win and City do not.

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    Team news

    Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers will give Leigh Griffiths another 24 hours to prove his fitness ahead of the game after the Hoops striker suffered from a tight hamstring last week.

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    Left-back Kieran Tierney is also out long-term with an ankle injury, while the remainder of the squad are avaliable for selection. 

    Leigh Griffiths of Celtic celebrates a goal with manager Brendan Rodgers
    Image: Leigh Griffiths will be given 24 hours by manager Brendan Rodgers to prove his fitness

    Lionel Messi is expected to return from an illness to feature for Barcelona with Luis Suarez also avaliable after serving a domestic suspension against Malaga on Saturday.

    Jordi Alba is expected to be back in the starting line-up after a hamstring knock while Gerard Pique could also continue his comeback from an ankle injury after featuring over the weeked, but Andres Iniesta and Samuel Umtiti are ruled out.

    Opta stats

    Barcelona have won seven of their nine Champions League games against Celtic (D1 L1). Celtic's only win in that run was in November 2012 when they recorded only 15% possession at Celtic Park to beat the Catalans (2-1).

    See Justin Bieber's football skills as he drops in on a Barcelona training session

    Barcelona's 7-0 win against Celtic on matchday one last September is the biggest margin of victory in this season's Champions League.

    Celtic have lost nine of their last 12 Champions League games (W1 D2). They are also winless in their last seven; an eighth would equal their longest run without a win in the competition.

    Celtic have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 17 Champions League games, their longest run without a shut-out in the competition.

    BARCELONA, SPAIN - AUGUST 20: Luis Suarez (R) of FC Barcelona celebrates with his teammates Lionel Messi (C) and Gerard Pique (L) after scoring his team's
    Image: Gerard Pique, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez could all start for Barcelona on Wednesday

    Only Legia Warsaw have conceded more goals (16) than Celtic (13) in this season's Champions League whilst Barcelona are the top scorers (14).

    Barcelona have won 21 of their 27 Champions League games under Luis Enrique (D2 L4).

    Charlie's prediction

    What approach does Brendan Rodgers go with? Does he send his team out to go for it like they did against City?

    I can confirm it will be cold up here but Barcelona always seems to enjoy the atmosphere of these games and the fans love to see these special players, so I'm not at all convinced that the stars will fail to turn up.

    Barcelona were held to a goalless draw by Malaga in La Liga

    It sounds like Lionel Messi is going to make it because he sat out the weekend, which is obviously bad news for Celtic.

    Celtic's instinct will be to go forward and that does play into the hands of Barcelona, who will be determined to finish top and avoid the pressure against Gladbach.

    They're still the best team on the planet when the three amigos are playing, but they are still vulnerable at the back and I'm going for a goal-fest.

    Charlie predicts: 2-3 and Suarez to score first - 55/1 with Sky Bet

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