Leverkusen’s Florian Wirtz celebrates after he scored his side’s third goal during the Europa League Group G soccer match between Bayer Leverkusen and Real Betis in Leverkusen, Germany, Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
Group G leader Leverkusen hosts third-placed Celtic at BayArena at 12:45 pm on Thursday
Germans thrashed Scottish giants 4-0 in Glasgow on Matchday 2 in September
See the odds and best bets for Bayer Leverkusen vs Celtic in the Europa League Group Stage Matchday 5
Celtic will aim to keep its faltering Europa League qualification hopes alive when it travels for a tough assignment at Bayer Leverkusen on Thursday. Bayer Leverkusen vs Celtic kicks off at 12:45 pm EST on November 25.
The German side thrashed Celtic 4-0 on its own patch in Glasgow on Matchday 2 in September.
Now, in third place in the standings in Group G, the Scottish outfit will need at least a point – and most likely an unexpected win – in Germany to keep alive any realistic hopes of progressing to the knockout stage.
Bayer Leverkusen vs Celtic Odds
B Leverkusen vs Celtic
BAY -1.5 (+130) | CEL +1.5 (-150)
BAY -220 | CEL +550 | DRAW +400
Ov 2.5 (-180) | Un 2.5 (+145)
Odds as of November 24 at DraftKings
Meanwhile, Leverkusen is dominant in first place in the group with 10 points.
It sits three ahead of second-placed Real Betis with two rounds of fixtures remaining.
Betis is this week at home against bottom club Ferencvaros of Hungary, which has lost all four games so far.
Celtic Hopes On a Knife-Edge
Therefore, with the likelihood that Betis will secure a win this time round to hit 10 points, Celtic – currently with six points – must think in terms of attempting to get an unlikely win at Leverkusen.
However, the oddsmakers at DraftKings do not see it that way.
Leverkusen is rated as a wide favorite at -220.
Celtic, furthermore, is a long outsider at +550. The draw, meanwhile, is priced at +400.
Leverkusen has won three and drawn one of its Europa League fixtures.
The German side is particularly powerful at home in this competition
A point this time out would secure its place in the knockout phase.
It is particularly powerful at home in this competition and has never lost in 14 Europa League group stage ties at its HQ – with 11 wins and three draws.
Meanwhile, it is a fair guide to the relative strengths of the teams in this section that Celtic was beaten by both Betis and Leverkusen – with its following two wins coming against the weak Ferencvaros line-up.
Moreover, Leverkusen sits impressively in fourth place in Germany’s Bundesliga.
However, it has faltered in recent weeks after an impressive start.
Bayer Leverkusen vs Celtic Europa League Stats
At least, though, Celtic can point to a run of nine matches unbeaten – with eight wins – in all competitions to accordingly give their followers some hope this week.
The team is in second place in the Scottish league, four points behind leaders Glasgow Rangers.
Leverkusen Have Twice Hit Four Goals
Significantly, Leverkusen has twice hit four goals in this competition this season with its last fixture earlier this month delivering a 4-0 home defeat of Real Betis. But it has conceded only twice in total.
Teenaged attacking midfielder Florian Wirtz has scored three times in the UEL so far – and the prop offer for him to score first at +500 certainly suggests better value than the Moneylines.
🎯 Among best in clear-cut shots
😲 Positive numbers in defending set-pieces!
🤔 Pressing problems at higher level?
Are Celtic’s Europa League knockout qualification hopes realistic? @jucojames investigates✍️📊https://t.co/J5VwOuwon1
— The Celtic Way (@celticway1888) November 24, 2021
With four further goals in the Bundesliga, his tally is now seven.
He was among the scorers in the 4-0 win at Celtic Park, along with Piero Hincapie, Lucas Alario (penalty) and Amine Adli.
Meanwhile, his Czech international teammate Patrik Schick is the favorite to score first at +320.
Final #B04Celtic training: ✅ pic.twitter.com/nT2mblpv2Q
— Bayer 04 Leverkusen (@bayer04_en) November 24, 2021
However, all eight of his goals this season have come in the Bundesliga.
After losing only one of its opening seven league games, Leverkusen has stuttered a little.
Leverkusen’s win last September inflicted Celtic’s heaviest defeat at home in Europe.
It subsequently went four games without a win before ending that run with a 1-0 win at home against Vfl Bochum last weekend.
Leverkusen’s win in Glasgow last September inflicted Celtic’s heaviest ever defeat at home in European competition.
Coach Ange Postecoglou insists his team is much improved since then. And, certainly, the undefeated nine-game run bears that out.
There was also a morale-boosting 2-1 defeat of St. Johnstone in the Scottish League Cup semifinal last weekend at Hampden Park.
Markedly, Celtic has yet to receive a single disciplinary card in the competition.
Scots Have Poor Defensive Record
However, after conceding 10 goals in this Europa League campaign, it has the joint-worst defensive record across the competition.
One factor which may furthermore give Celtic hope is that Leverkusen has kept only two cleans sheets in its last eight games across all competitions.
Conversely, Leverkusen’s 11 goals make it the second-highest scorer in the competition.
Ralston on #Celtic‘s desire, the trophy trail and the Europa League challenge @CelticStarMag https://t.co/QS1vEaTHgO
— Celtic news now (@Celticnewsnow) November 22, 2021
Its’ 4-0 win in September marked the only time these teams have previously met each other.
And, to sum up, it looks likely that Leverkusen will secure another comfortable win this time around with 18-year-old German international Wirtz looking to add to his goal-scoring tally.
Pick: Florian Wirtz First Goalscorer (+500)