July 9th, 2019

Back the Old Firm in Europe?-6/1 and 12/1 Specials

No before you complain, Celtic and Rangers don’t play each other in European competition tonight….

Most of us hard-core football fans are pretty happy that the summer exile of ‘decent’ football is almost over. I mean the Copa America, Women’s World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations have all provided some level on entertainment.

But lets be serious, International football isn’t the best watch is it? And the majority of us couldn’t wait for the first round of the Champions and Europa League competitions to start! I mean, we are all desperate for some club football.

Neil Lennon’s Celtic travel to Bosnia to take on the mighty FK Sarajevo, while Stephen Gerrard’s Rangers head to the lovely secluded island of Gibraltar to face St Joseph’s.

Luckily for them, both teams have been handed draws against absolute nobodies and should stroll into the next round of qualifying without any trouble. The hardest thing about the game is navigating the transport for the trip!

Jermaine Defoe to score from outside the penalty area-6/1

Rangers will look to end the tie in tonight’s first leg away in Gibraltar, which has provided tricky wind conditions and a horrible plastic pitch for many who have made this trip.

Mr Gerrard will have to rile his troops up, as these games are not the easiest to get up for one bit. Just ask Ireland boss Mick McCarthy…

A fast tempo will be needed to overcome St Joseph’s and a brand of football that will be quick enough to break down opponents, and come home to Glasgow with a positive result to take into the second leg.

The bullish style of Alfredo Morelos may not be enough to nick a goal tonight. Step up Jermaine Defoe!

One of the most experienced strikers in English football, certainly has never been given the task to take on a team that no one really knows. A moment of magic could be all this game needs, and a wonder-strike outside the box could seal the deal.

Defoe has scored 8 goals in 17 appearances for the Gers, as well as scoring on huge European nights throughout his career. I like Defoe’s chances of bagging a goal at 6/1 even if he comes on from the bench.

Scott Brown to receive the first card-12/1

Now I don’t want to get the Celtic fans on my back about this one. I will note that Scott Brown is one of the most intelligent footballers, especially when it comes to riling up his opponents. Shithousry at it’s finest!

An away trip to face FK Sarajevo, in the lovely city of Bosnia is one I’m sure every player and fan alike dreams off.

Not knowing much about your opponents isn’t great, but wont stop someone like leader Scott Brown sticking the boot in to remind his opponent ‘welcome to Paradise mate’.

Over the years Brown has had a poor disciplinary record, especially in the heated Old Firm derby’s. He has moved into the holding midfield role in recent years and hasn’t needed to use his over-aggressiveness, as much.

But he always has that one nasty tackle in him. At 12/1 to receive the first card of the contest, I think this is a nice punt.