Europa League: Pressure on Postecoglou following Champions League exit

Ange Postecoglou Celtic
Ange Postecoglou goes in search of his first win as Celtic boss

Four Scottish teams are in European action on Thursday but the focus is on Celtic following their painful exit from the Champions League. Betfair's Frankie Monkhouse previews...

"It’s still very early in both teams' season, and we are expecting to see a few goals."

Scottish sides feature

Ange Postecoglou failed his first test as Celtic manager when his side was knocked out of the Champions League at the earliest opportunity. Fans are still in shock, but the Bhoys must dust themselves down and come again. Celtic travel to the Czech Republic on Thursday, taking on FK Jablonec in the Europa League qualifying round. Quite the fall from grace.

The Hoops aren't the only Scottish team in action on the continent. St Johnstone visit Galatasaray in the Europa League while Hibs host HNK Rejjeka in the Conference League and Bridablik play Aberdeen. A thrilling night lies ahead.

FK Jablonec v Celtic
Thursday, 16:45

The home team go into this competition on the back of a hugely successful domestic campaign. They finished last season in third place, securing their place in the Europa League, with Slavia Prague and Sparta Prague taking the two Champions League slots.

Jablonec started the season with a hard-earned 1-0 home win over Banik Ostrava but were well beaten at the weekend. On Saturday, they went to Mlada Boleslav and lost 3-0, which was a real dent for the confidence at the worst possible time. The betting on the Betfair Sportsbook has a home win at 3.6013/5.

Must-win game for Celtic

Celtic boss Postecoglou has never won a competitive match at his new employers. The former Australian boss who has limited experience in Europe drew home and away with Danish side Midtjylland but was knocked out of the Champions League in extra-time, losing 2-1 last week.

The Hoops got their Scottish Premiership title challenge off to the worst possible start when losing 2-1 to newly-promoted Hearts at Tynecastle on Saturday. That result meant they finished the game second from bottom of the league with Old Firm rivals Rangers surging into pole position. Fans are beginning to get restless. The away win is 1.855/6 with a draw 3.4012/5.

It's still very early in both teams' season, and we are expecting to see a few goals. Jablonec doesn't look the best, but they can score against a nervy and unorganised Celtic defence. Back both teams to score and Celtic to win at 4.3310/3.

Galatasaray v St Johnstone
Thursday, 19:00

Turkish side Galatasaray will be hurting after another season missing out on the Champions League millions. They'll want to take that frustration out on the Scottish Premiership side St Johnstone on Thursday as they aim to make it to the group stages of this tournament.

They were knocked out of Europe's elite by Dutch club PSV last week, beaten home and away. The aggregate score was an embarrassing one for the Turks, who slumped out in the qualifying rounds 7-2 overall and that included a 2-1 home defeat last Wednesday. Despite that, we're taking Galatasaray to win this match at 1.251/4. At home the Turks are good enough to kill this tie off and can be backed -2 goals on the handicap at 3.505/2 with the Sportsbook.

Saints enter the lion's den

St Johnstone fans spent the summer months dreaming of their club's return to European football only to be hit by a monster tie at the earliest opportunity. It's safe to say there were easier teams the Saints could have drawn in the qualifiers.

A trip to Turkey isn't welcomed by most of the top clubs in Europe, and St Johnstone will struggle from the first whistle. Their best chance is to frustrate an already under pressure opponent and hope the crowd turn on them. Will St Johnstone get back to Perth in one piece? The away win is 9.5017/2 with the draw 54/1.

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