Charlie Nicholas claims that Celtic’s clash against Rennes on Thursday night is about giving fringe players valuable minutes, but he’s totally wrong with his advice.
The Bhoys host French outfit Rennes at Parkhead in the Europa League group stages and know that they are already in the knockout rounds.
Neil Lennon’s side sit top of Group E with 10 points from four games and are now in the race to try top the pile.
They face bottom of the group Rennes on Thursday, before the final match away to second-placed CFR Cluj.
Ex-Celtic player and now Sky Sports pundit Nicholas insists that it’s an ideal time to give some fringe figures minutes on the European stage.
“Celtic are top of their group and want to win the group but Neil Lennon will make three or four changes nevertheless. They need to keep feeding players game time,” Nicholas told Sky Sports.
“I see them winning but it will be a tough one – it is a hard-working night but it is more about game time for some fringe players.“
Lennon may be able to afford one or two tweaks to his side due to a busy fixture list, but it makes sense not trying to go all out to win against Rennes.
Celtic have had a stunning campaign in Europe so far and the aim has to be go as far into the Europa League competition as they can.
They will avoid the Champions League dropouts in the round of 32 if they top their group and that’s a major incentive for the Scottish champions.
Celtic could secure top spot on Thursday if results go their way and they have to go all out for three points against Rennes.