The statistics which point to a Celtic triumph over Cluj

By John Reid

August 6, 2019

When Celtic take on Cluj in the third round of the Champions League, it will be the third time that Neil Lennon has managed Celtic at this stage of the tournament.

Interestingly enough, in the four games he has managed in the third round the Hoops have remained unbeaten. They have recorded three wins and a draw.

Navigated Celtic through four tough ties

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

In 2012-13, the Hoops defeated HJK Helsinki 2-1 at Celtic Park, then recorded a fine 2-0 win in Helsinki. The next season, the Hoops had a tougher test on their hands.

They faced Swedish side Elfsborg, and after only winning the first leg at Celtic Park 1-0, the Hoops had to dig out a 0-0 draw in the away leg.

Postecoglou hints at big week of Celtic announcements

Reached group stages in both seasons

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Intriguingly, the Hoops managed to reach the group stages of the Champions League in both of those seasons.

Lennon should have plenty of confidence in both himself and his players that they will be able to reach the play-off round.

It won’t be an easy task. Cluj will feel that they can win the tie, just like the Hoops will feel that they can qualify. However, Celtic have the players who have played in the Champions League group stages before.

They know what it takes to get the job done. Coupled with Lennon’s excellent third round record, there is no reason why Celtic shouldn’t be qualifying for the play-off round.