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Real Betis vs Celtic: Europa League preview, team news, stats, kick-off time

  /  autty

Team news and stats ahead of Real Betis vs Celtic in the Europa League group stage on Thursday; kick-off 5.45pm.

Team news

Celtic will be without captain Callum McGregor. The Scotland midfielder will miss the Europa League opener in Spain after sustaining a knock, while attacker Liel Abada will be absent as he is observing the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur.

With talismanic striker Kyogo Furuhashi also out, Hoops boss Ange Postecoglou knows his team face a stern test against a side who finished sixth in La Liga last term.

Right-back Anthony Ralston is available after missing last weekend's win over Ross County as Celtic return to the city that hosted their 2003 UEFA Cup final defeat by Porto, when they memorably took a huge travelling support to Andalusia.

Postecoglou excited by Betis prospect

Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou: "We had somebody watch them watch play on Monday. We've got all the information we need on them. They've brought in one or two but they're a pretty settled team. They had a fantastic season last year and they've got an outstanding manager but they're the type of opposition we want to test ourselves against.

"It's why we were so pleased to get into this group stage because we knew we'd get some pretty exciting fixtures. We want to enjoy it but we'll only do that if we have an impact. Can we play our football against some quality opposition home and away?

"We'll hopefully be involved in some special nights but I want the enjoyment to come from us believing in the kind of football team we want to be.

"I don't want us to be fearful or hesitant. To truly take in an experience, I've always felt that you need to give all of yourself and believe in something, and usually, you come away having lived that experience to its fullest."

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