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Celtic’s predicted XI to face Sparta Prague as Albian Ajeti misses out

For Celtic, it couldn’t get much worse at the moment.

They are 11 points behind their old nemesis in the race to win the Scottish Premiership and heading to the Czech Republic on Thursday, they are bottom of their Europa League group.

Coming through a run of games against Lille, Milan and Sparta Prague was always going to be difficult but if the Hoops are to prevail, they simply have to win this week.

That’s not just for the sake of their European progression, but for the sake of Neil Lennon too – a man who is under pressure despite receiving the backing of the board.

Who should play at RB?

Elhamed

Elhamed

Frimpong

Frimpong

Therefore, his team selection this evening will be incredibly vital. He made a big call with Odsonne Edouard against Hibernian and it didn’t pay off, so does he come back into the fray tonight?

Check out our predicted XI…

In this side, Lennon looks set to make three key changes to his starting XI.

Let’s start with the biggest of them all – axing Albian Ajeti. The £4.3m-rated forward has failed to score in eight games and there can be little justification behind starting him.

We wrote this week that Patryk Klimala should finally get a look in but in a must-win clash, it’s Edouard who we ultimately think Lennon will settle on.

Another change comes at right-back. Jeremie Frimpong has been a favourite under the current management but with Celtic’s defence not up to scratch – conceding ten more than Rangers in the league – it’s the right-back who is sacrificed. As a result, Hatem Elhamed comes into the XI.

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The final change sees Nir Bitton dropped with Christopher Jullien returning after injury.

Lennon admitted this week that he was in contention to play so the Frenchman’s inclusion will be a huge boost to a faltering backline. He partners Kristoffer Ajer with Shane Duffy having to settle for a place on the bench again.

Meanwhile, here’s how Celtic can end their Lennoxtown PURGATORY with a new manager…

Article title: Celtic’s predicted XI to face Sparta Prague as Albian Ajeti misses out

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