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Celtic’s predicted XI to face AZ Alkmaar

Celtic know a win on Thursday evening will secure their long-winded pathway to regular European football this season.

Ange Postecoglou’s start to life as Hoops boss has been a barnstorming affair with the Bhoys scoring goals on a regular basis and shaping up more organised in defence.

Consequently, they have breezed through the qualifying stages for the Europa League and now just need to see things out against AZ Alkmaar on Thursday evening.

The Hoops will come into this clash with immense confidence after demolishing St Mirren 6-0 last weekend.

Yet, will there be many changes to that side? Here’s what we’re predicting Postecoglou to do…

We are tipping the manager to make two changes to his side from last weekend.

Celtic’s defence is likely to be unchanged with Josip Juranovic unavailable for selection after his move from Legia Warsaw.

Would you drop Edouard?

No chance!

No chance!

Definitely!

Definitely!

That means Anthony Ralston gets another opportunity to shine in a big game after his impressive start to the season, scoring twice.

The two alterations are further forward where Odsonne Edouard is axed from the XI. The Frenchman hasn’t started a single game in qualification with Kyogo Furuhashi entrusted to lead the line instead.

With James Forrest out injured, David Turnbull moves slightly further forward after his hat-trick just a few days ago.

That means there is no place for Ryan Christie as Tom Rogic comes into the side. We’ve waxed lyrical about the Australian this term and have already staked his claim to play from the off.

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Guess the shirt numbers from Celtic's famous 2002/03 UEFA Cup side. Let's start with Mohammed Sylla...

The second and final change is in the middle of the park where Ismaila Soro starts ahead of the injured James McCarthy.

The £11k-per-week Ivorian has been out of the team recently but with Celtic needing to protect their 2-0 aggregate lead, Postecoglou may opt for extra protection in front of his backline. Previously described as “powerful” by former coach Ori Guttman, he has the potential to add a great deal of energy to the team.

He plays next to the club captain Callum McGregor who has been on form in the early weeks of the new campaign.

AND in other news, Forget Edouard: Ange must unleash £16k-p/w Celtic gem today, he’s “majestic to watch”…

Article title: Celtic’s predicted XI to face AZ Alkmaar

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