Celtic take on Spanish giants Real Madrid this weekend, as Ladbrokes announce a new free bets offer on the football and price the Bhoys at big odds of 9/1 in this high-profile friendly match for the Scottish Premier League Champions.
Their domestic season may already be underway with a 1-0 victory over Aberdeen on the opening day, but these matches are a big part of Celtic’s season. It is the chance for them to come up against some of the best teams in Europe.
Neil Lennon’s men need to travel to America to complete this fixture too, so they will want to make the most of the trip. It will be their aim to compete with Madrid and perhaps prepare for some tough European fixtures later in the season.
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With local rivals Rangers no longer an SPL side due to their automatic relegation, genuinely competitive matches for Celtic could be few and far between this season. Saturday’s clash with Madrid is a chance for them to stay sharp.
In terms of the players Lennon will be counting on to raise their game, midfielder Kris Commons scored the winner against Aberdeen and he is definitely one to watch. You then have Gary Hooper who will be considered as their main goal scoring threat.
Real Madrid are a team blessed with world-class talent though and they will be expected to defeat Celtic this weekend. This is Jose Mourinho’s men last friendly match before the season starts, so they should be sharp and focused on a positive performance
The threat they possess going forward is massive of course. Not only do they have Cristiano Ronaldo – arguably the best player in the world – but the likes of Karim Benzema, Mesut Ozil and Xabi Alonso too.
In fact, this is probably the strongest squad Madrid have had for a number of years and there is no doubt that they will be confident of retaining their La Liga title this season.
Overall, with both teams ready for the new campaign, this should be a friendly with a quick tempo and competitive edge. Both Celtic and Madrid want to win their respective leagues this season and the winning starts here.
Tune in to this one from 6.30pm on Saturday evening.