May 21, 2018

Celtic's Champions League opponents revealed

20 June 2017, 12:17 | Sandy Nunez

Celtic dropped only eight points in winning a sixth successive Scottish top-flight title

Celtic celebrate

The Belfast club, managed by former Rangers frontman David Healy, will face the Glasgow giants in the second round of qualifying next month - if they can see off San Marino outfit La Fiorita.

However, according to Northern Irish journalist Steven Beacom, the two clubs have already agreed that the game will not take place on 12 July.

Should the Blues progress the club will be obliged, under UEFA's ticket allocation rules, to make at least 10% of Windsor Park's 18,000 seats available to the away supporters. I'm sure the fans would love nothing more than a game against Celtic.

"Financially for Linfield it would be a glamour tie to get Celtic".

"That is the preferred option at the moment but there have been no discussions about switching the games at all".

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The 11/12 July date is problematic as it coincides with the "Twelfth" marches in Northern Ireland and an alternative arrangement is likely to be sought.

But above all, Celtic's first priority will be to keep hold of their existing star players.

Rodgers and his side will then face Rapid Vienna (July 1), Slavia Prague (July 4) and Shamrock Rovers (July 8) before turning their attentions to the Champions League qualifiers.

In his first year in charge Brendan Rodgers led Celtic to the title by a margin of 30 points. Being realistic, I don't think there would be any chance of us beating them.

The idea of the traditionally Catholic team playing against a Protestant side in Belfast on the day celebrating the Battle of the Boyne has sent football fans into overdrive.

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