Juventus vs. Celtic: Hoops Players Who Can Make 2nd Leg Interesting
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After surrendering three goals at Parkhead, Celtic face a tough task in the second leg of the UEFA Champions League final-16.
While they’re in Turin, the atmosphere will make it difficult for the Hoops to advance.
The Hoops are happy to be at this point, and facing the Serie A leaders, they’ll be more than content with a hard-fought bout.
That being said, Celtic is on the brink of history. A win would give Celtic the club record for wins in Europe in a single season.
Right now, the Hoops have to just go into Turin hoping for a positive result. To do so, they’ll need strong outings from several key players.
Victor Wanyama, the 21-year-old Kenyan midfielder, has been in transfer rumors with Premier League teams, and will use this match as an opportunity to show his worth.
He is extremely physical on and off the ball and can find open space to work with. Wanyama's ability to win the ball with his strength could provide problems for Juventus, who can’t play too comfortable even with a 3-0 lead.
During his three seasons with Celtic, Wanyama has proven to be a valuable asset to the club.
He recently received praise from Juve midfielder Andrea Pirlo, who said “he has the quality and physical attributes to boss games.”
Despite being more of a defensive-midfielder, he has recorded one goal in Champions League matches this year. He’s added six goals in the Scottish Premier League this season.
His combative nature will be on display and his resolve will be tested at the highest level.
Gary Hooper is another player that will make an impact on the game. After the defeat at Parkhead, the striker was under scrutiny for blocking goalkeeper Gigi Buffon on a corner kick.
Manager Neil Lennon voiced his displeasure toward the referees and the Juventus tactics.
Hooper should use this scrutiny as motivation to help get the Hoops ahead early in an effort to stage a comeback. The 25-year-old has four goals in the Champions League this year.
Small in stature, he has to use his quickness and first-touch ability to find space and create chances.
As Celtic manager Lennon told Ewan Murray of The Guardian, it will take a "minor miracle" to advance to the Quarterfinals.
There’s still 90 minutes of play left for Celtic to battle and try to save their Champions League campaign.
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