Who has that Champions League class to shine for Celtic?

Fraser Forster was recently speaking about Celtic when he appeared on the Official Tottenham Hotspur Podcast. The 35-year-old stopper reminisced about the most famous night in his Celtic career – the 2-1 win over Barcelona at Celtic Park back in 2012.

His individual display on that evening earned him rave reviews, with Spanish sports newspaper Marca describing him as “La Gran Muralla” which translates to “The Great Wall”. Meanwhile, Lionel Messi, widely regarded as the greatest football of all time, described Forster’s display as being the best goalkeeping performance he had ever seen.

Looking back on that famous result, Forster recalled, “It’s impossible to put into words. We’d played them away, I think, two weeks earlier and we lost 2-1 in the last minute and I’d made saves, but the performance we’d put in away from home really carried us into the home one because we knew we’d have the fans with us.

“But the noise that night as well – obviously we ended up going 2-0 up and they scored right at the end – but it was just, kind of, unbelievable. It was just one of those days when you’re in the zone and everything goes your way. You’re seeing the ball like it’s a gym ball and it’s just amazing.”

Players with a knack of providing an individual display of brilliance on the big occasion are vital to a team like Celtic. In recent times, questions have been raised over whether the Celtic squad possesses players of that mould who can carry the team through big fixtures like the one we have ahead of us tomorrow night.

Here are a selection of players who may just possess that quality for Celtic:

Callum McGregor

The skipper has shown on multiple occasions for club and country that he can rise to the big occasion. Time and time again he has galvanised the Celtic squad, and his displays for Scotland have shown he can do it on the international stage too.

His performances for Scotland at Euro 2020, despite an unfortunate campaign all round, as well as his role in the national team’s resurgence over the last few years show that he can provide the quality needed against Europe’s elite.

Matt O’Riley

The Dane has been the standout performer for Celtic so far this season with many fans earmarking him as the early contender for player of the season.

Despite Celtic’s frustrating start to the Champions League campaign, O’Riley has come out of both fixtures with pass marks and was the standout performer in the most recent fixture at home to Lazio, grabbing the assist for Kyogo Furuhashi’s opener.

He is only showing signs of improving and with the 22-year-old being on the verge of a call-up to the Danish national team, his stock and high-level experience is only going to continue to rise.

With four games left of the Champions League group stage, there will be plenty more opportunities for O’Riley to shine again against the best that Europe has to offer.

Reo Hatate

Despite a slow start to this season, Reo has the quality to shine on the Champions League platform.

Now he has regained full fitness and has adapted to the new gaffer, the stage is set for Celtic’s midfield playmaker.

Kyogo Furuhashi

With 60 goals in 95 appearances for Celtic, Kyogo has a talismanic presence in Brendan Rodgers’ side.

The Japanese forward is already off the mark at this level, having broken his duck against Lazio, and he will be keen to add to his tally against the Spaniards on Wednesday night.


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