Celtic can make home advantage count in the Champions League

Celtic head into their third qualifying round match for the Champions League on Wednesday night when they face Norwegian side Rosenborg at Celtic Park. They will be desperate to take a lead to Norway with them for the second leg and that is something I believe they can do on Wednesday.

Celtic eased past Linfield 6-0 on aggregate in their previous round, setting up a game against Rosenborg, who also found a way past Irish opposition in the previous round. They have things much tougher though, needing extra time to eventually beat Dundalk 3-2 on aggregate.

While I am sure we will see Rosenborg in a much better light in this game, their opening round victory over Dundalk was nothing special. Needing extra time to beat a team that Celtic would have beaten comfortably is not the best preparation, and they have to show much more if they are to trouble Celtic.

The one advantage Rosenborg have is that they are well into their league campaign, and after 17 games they are top of the Norwegian Premier Division. That must give them a fitness advantage, something they need to use against Celtic.

However, for me, Celtic are clear favourites to win this game despite that. They have shown their quality in other competitive games this summer and they will be going all out to take a lead to Norway with them, to make their life as easy as possible out there.

Playing at Celtic Park is a tough night and one that I think the Norwegians will struggle to cope. For that reason, and the quality gap between these two, I am going to side with Celtic winning this game comfortably by two or three goals. This will be enough to see them qualify for the fourth qualifying round too.

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