AIK Stockholm survive major scare to set up Celtic clash

By John Reid

August 16, 2019

Celtic’s forthcoming opponents in the Europa League have been revealed. The Hoops will take on AIK Stockholm in the two legged affair, with the first leg next Thursday at Celtic Park.

It certainly wasn’t easy for AIK to make the play-off round. In fact, they survived a major scare. They went through 3-2 on aggregate against Sheriff, but held to a 1-1 draw in the second leg, which was played in Sweden.

Nabil Bahoui seemed to have put AIK through with a second-half goal. However, a late equaliser by Gabrijel Boban put the tie back on edge.

AIK survived tough match to set up tie

(Photo by Michael Campanella/Getty Images)

However, Stockholm managed to survive and set up the match with Neil Lennon’s side.

Normally, you would think that with AIK struggling to beat Sheriff, the Hoops would be favourites to progress to the group stages.

However, so poor were the Hoops against Cluj that nothing can be taken for granted. It will be interesting to see how Celtic approach the fixture.

Real blow for manager if Hoops don’t reach group stages

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Fans will demand some sort of European football this season following the exit from the Champions League. Therefore, Neil Lennon will be taking the games very seriously. It would be a real blow for him to exit two European competitions in less than a month.

A win for the Hoops in the play-off would not make up for losing out on the Champions League. However, it would at least guarantee European football until at least Christmas.