Former Lazio and Manchester City striker Rolando Bianchi believes the Italian giants will crash OUT of the Europa League unless they can take something at Celtic Park next month.
Last Thursday, while the Hoops were battling to a draw against Rennes in France, Lazio were crashing to a shock defeat to Cluj in Romania.
It was a result that raised eyebrows across European football and, Bianchi argues, one which has thrown Group E wide open.
“In Italy, the initial expectation was that Lazio were sure to win against Cluj and win easily,” he said.
“However, they lost in Serie A to SPAL to a late goal and, on the back of that, have gone and suffered another defeat.
“Now they are in trouble, especially because Rennes and Celtic have shared the points in their opening fixture.
“I like Celtic and think they have an obvious chance to progress to the next stages of the competition.
“They are very strong at home and if they beat Lazio in Glasgow (on October 24), I think that will be the end for my former club in this year’s competition.
“Simone Inzaghi is a shrewd manager who has good players available to him, but at the same time he has problems he has to overcome.”
Former Kilmarnock skipper Manuel Pascali meanwhile believes Odsonne Edouard would develop into one of Europe’s top strikers if he were to move to Napoli.
Carlo Ancelotti, Napoli’s manager, is a known admirer of the Celtic striker.
And following Edouard’s eyecatching displays for French Under-21s, for whom he scored in two games, he has been tipped to make a £30-million move either in the January window or at the end of the season.
Said Pascali, whose old club meet the Hoops today: “It does not surprise me he is drawing attention from very big clubs because he is a complete striker.
“He is very strong, physically, has great technique and, importantly, is very mobile.
“He can attack from any area and has also become a specialist in free-kicks.
“Though still young at 21-years-old, he has played for France at all the youth levels and now is making an impact for his country’s Under-21 team.
“That is a very high level and if he can also make the kind of big impact in the later stages of the Europa League that he has in the Scottish game, then there will be a lot of teams interested.
“I think he would certainly grow as a player if he went to Napoli but he might also do so if he stays with Celtic.”
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