Parkhead Awaits… And It Won’t Be Easy

By on August 7, 2009

Arsenal have drawn Scottish giants, Celtic, in the Champions League Play-offs and hundreds of newspaper headline writers dig in their bag for that old chestnut, “Battle of Britain.” The UEFA co-efficients seemed not to have done their job as Lyon drew Anderlecht and Alexander Hleb’s Stuttgart drew FC Timisoara while Atletico Madrid drew Panathinaikos and Sporting Lisbon get Fiorentina. Arsenal will travel north to Celtic Park on either 18/19 August and then back home for the second leg the following week on 25/26 August.

Celtic FCSo, is this a good draw? Yes and no. Considering the way a less-than-full-strength Arsenal dispatched an admittedly not full-strength Rangers last week, I believe it is. Also, consider Celtic’s pathetic away record in the Champions League They were able to get their first away result in the Champions League in six years and 23 matches, however, in Moscow to advance to the play-offs.

On the other hand, it is certainly not a good draw because Parkhead has never been an easy stroll for any big team which goes there. Ideally, I would rather have the first tie at home where we could likely build up a nice lead for the second leg. Despite their poor away record and having lost 1-nil to Dinamo Moscow in the third-round first leg, Celtic have regularly gotten results against big clubs at Celtic Park. Just last year, in the group stages, Celtic drew United 1-1 and beat Villareal 2-nil at Celtic Park, while the year before that they beat Milan 2-1 and, in 2006, they beat United 1-nil at home.

What do you think of the draw?


  1. BendyTheViking

    August 7, 2009 at 7:47 am

    Could have been worse. We escaped Madrid, which is who we didn’t want. I think we will win this comfortably. I can’t see them posing too much of an offensive threat and I cannot see them keeping us out for 180 minutes.

    • natsteel

      August 7, 2009 at 8:19 am

      I’m not saying we won’t win but it will be trickier than almost any other draw, even possibly Atletico considering Celtic’s record at home against big teams. And the fact that the first leg is up there rather than at the Emirates is tough. As long as we get our away goal, we should be fine. But I’d much rather go to Glasgow up 1 or 2-nil than come back to the Emirates down 1-nil or 2-1. Either way, Celtic-Arsenal at Parkhead is going to be something really special in terms of atmosphere. If I could go to one game all season, it would be that one.

  2. BendyTheViking

    August 7, 2009 at 7:58 am

    This would be my line up:

    -Arshavin———-van Persie-


  3. Casicky

    August 14, 2009 at 12:11 am

    Bendy i would go with that line up too cant believe even with all those people on there we dont have Eboue or Vela there,those are the kind of things that build my optimism to the fact that if we lucky with injuries we could really do something this season.

    Celtic Park will be a real test coz the scottish top two really know how to turn up the pressure so it would be good to see how we deal with that kind of atmosphere so as to give us a taster of future 20 minute onslaughts at like Old Trafford,Anfield and the Bridge,i dont like draws much but i would settle for a score draw and hopefully finish things of at the Emirates


  4. ArsenalStation

    August 14, 2009 at 2:11 am

    I’m with you Casicky… a scored draw at Parkhead would definitely be a satisfactory result.

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