Lazio aren’t lacking in talent.

From the free-scoring Ciro Immobile to gifted midfielders Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Luis Alberto, through to the imperious Francesco Acerbi in defence, they possess star quality in abundance.

But while the Serie A giants may be the top seeds in Europa League Group E, their topsy-turvy season so far has exposed several areas where Celtic can look to get at them.

If Neil Lennon’s side follow the following three steps, they could be in for another memorable European night at Parkhead on Thursday.

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Lazio’s away form this season has been patchy at best. Their 3-0 win on the opening weekend of the season against a poor Sampdoria side remains their only victory on the road, and their travel sickness appears unlikely to abate at a lively Celtic Park.

The Romans pulled off a remarkable comeback to recover from a 3-0 half-time deficit to draw 3-3 with Atalanta at the weekend, but their meek first-half display produced a fresh batch of questions about the team’s mental strength.

They drift in and out of games and are often guilty of letting their heads drop when their backs are against the wall, particularly outside of Rome.

Already this season, Lazio have surrendered leads to lose against Cluj and SPAL, needed to fight back from behind twice to earn a draw at Bologna and appeared to give up hope of getting a result away to Inter Milan after wasting several good chances.

If Celtic can take an early lead and put the Italians under pressure from the first whistle with the crowd behind them, the visitors could be overwhelmed by the occasion.


Simone Inzaghi’s side like to get forward and aren’t shy about committing numbers to attacks. But if Celtic can soak up the pressure, they should be able to find some joy on the break, where they can punish the Italians in transition.

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Lucas Leiva is often left with the unenviable task of single-handedly stopping waves of attacks after seeing his team-mates lose the ball in the final third. Celtic will find joy if they can move the ball quickly, directly and accurately before Lazio can regain their shape.

Inzaghi is likely to rotate his team and some of the players who are likely to start could be weak links to exploit.

Jony is a left winger adapting to a wing-back role and has been guilty of defensive mishaps already this season. At the back, Denis Vavro’s lack of mobility could leave him exposed when dragged out of position, while Bastos is quick and strong but prone to errors of judgment. Any opportunity to put pressure on him should be seized upon.


Immobile and Alberto are Lazio’s most dangerous players; one the finisher, the other the creator.

Immobile currently leads the Serie A scoring charts with nine goals in his first eight games, while Alberto’s tally of five assists is the joint-highest in the league. It’s hard to find a Lazio goal this season without one of their fingerprints on it.

One piece of good news for Celtic is that it’s likely that one – if not both – of Lazio’s star men will be rested for the midweek fixture ahead of an important Serie A clash with Fiorentina on Sunday.

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But against Rennes, the second half introduction of Alberto and Milinkovic-Savic from the bench completely changed the game and allowed the Romans to come from behind to win 2-1.

Celtic must ensure that they do everything in their power to stifle the passing vision of Alberto, while the Bhoys defence will be punished if they get flummoxed by the clever movement of a quick-thinking Immobile.

Keeping the pair quiet will be crucial to Celtic’s success – regardless of how long they have on the pitch.