Cluj manager backs Celtic to win the Europa League

By Connor Gordon

December 12, 2019

Cluj manager Dan Petrescu believes tonight’s opponents Celtic can win the Europa League.

The Romanian buttered up the Bhoys in the press conference for Celtic’s damp squib clash. Cluj are aiming to seal qualification with a victory but a defeat could see them out. Perhaps Petrescu’s comments are more mind games than anything congratulatory.

Cluj man Dan Petrescu backs Celtic in Europa League

Petrescu isn’t unfamiliar with a bit of controversy or sly tactics when it comes to football.

Does Cluj manager Dan Petrescu really think Celtic can win the Europa League? (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The former Chelsea man likes to use every trick in the book to get into his opponents’ heads. He knows how important tonight’s clash is for his side’s qualification hopes against Celtic.

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The Bhoys may be putting out a weaker team, but that’s not stopping Petrescu.

He told the Daily Record: “Celtic can go all the way. They can win the competition.

“I would say the same about Lazio, if they qualify. They are both good enough to go all the way. They are Champions League teams in my opinion.”

Petrescu also thinks Celtic are “favourites” despite his team needing just a point to qualify.

Dan Petrescu isn’t hoping for Rennes to beat Lazio. (Photo by DAMIEN MEYER/AFP via Getty Images)

He is also not relying on Rennes getting anything from Lazio in the last match but is just happy to be in grasp of qualification.

Romanian side’s captain not hedging his bets either

Cluj skipper Mario Camora believes it doesn’t matter who Celtic field tonight as it will still be tough.

He said: “Celtic is Celtic. Whoever plays will be good.

“It won’t be easy. It’s good we are at home but it will be difficult and we’ll need to concentrate if we want to qualify. It would be a pity to fail in the last match.”

Mario Camora thinks Celtic will be a tough match no matter who plays. (Photo by Getty Images)

The Hoops will be looking at ending a European group undefeated for the first time ever. It’s the earliest a Scottish side has ever qualified for the next stage of European football too.

Those who will play will have a point to prove that they should be in Neil Lennon’s strongest side. Perhaps that will be the boost the squad needs to go out and get the victory against a sturdy side.