I find it hard to be interested in the Champions League group stages these days when Celtic aren’t involved.

The Lisbon mini-tournament finals were entertaining earlier this year and I’ll be keeping a close eye on the knockout stages this term, but the group stage rarely catches my attention.

However, there are a few interesting Celtic threads running through this year’s competition, despite our failure in qualification.

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It’s worthwhile seeing how Ferencvaros are getting on, as a ‘what might have been’ torture for the soul. They got horsed by Barcelona on matchday one if you’re wondering and right now, at the time of publishing, they are 2-0 down to Dynamo Kiev.

Some fans are also keeping an eye on the Boli Bolingoli situation at Istanbul Basaksehir too. If he performs well on loan then perhaps we might land a bigger fee for him in future?

Then there’s Erik Sviatchenko and his FC Midtjylland side, who came through qualifying to take part in a group involving Liverpool, Ajax and Atalanta.

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The former Celtic star played at Anfield last night and, although they lost the encounter 2-0, his appearance and performance did catch the eye of some nostalgic Bhoys supporters.

It doesn’t help that Lennon’s team are currently suffering a defensive crisis, with some pining fans even calling for the big Dane to return to the club.

That’s not likely, nor is it particularly clever from my point of view, though I suppose things can’t look much worse at the back right now.

Erik Sviatchenko in his Celtic days

Erik Sviatchenko in his Celtic days / (Photo by Dave Howarth – CameraSport via Getty Images)

If you’re interested in what people have been saying about the centre-half, these fans have taken to Twitter over the last 48 hours to share their thoughts…

 

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