Sports

Mancini: Zenit could be rusty after long winter break

Mancini: Zenit could be rusty after long winter break

Celtic have been delivered bad news ahead of Thursday night's Europa League clash against Zenit St Petersburg after hearing that Nir Bitton has been ruled out until the end of the season, according to a report. The 33-year-old Serbia global was expected to miss the last-32 clash in Glasgow because of an eye injury.

But Mancini has left the door open for the former Stamford Bridge star to feature against Brendan Rodgers' Scottish champions.

"Manchester City were virtually at the beginning of their journey there". We calculated everything because it's an important game. "We will decide tomorrow".

However, Mancini is refusing to look too closely at those painful results against two of Europe's biggest superpowers.

The former Celtic boss said: "They are playing with confidence, the Europa League should suit them and I think they could make a good fist of the competition and go quite far into it, while winning the league in Scotland".

"Celtic at home are a very tough team".

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But they will not have it any easier against the Russian outfit who cantered through their Europa League group undefeated with five wins out of six.

"The supporters always push the team".

"Having analysed them and watched them for a few months now, we know they are individually and collectively a top team, a Champions League-level team with quality".

"We can't change this situation, we need to do our best if we want to get through".

Zenit have played eight friendly games throughout their break but the skipper, who spoke on the club's official website, hopes a fit and ready Celtic squad will give the Scots an advantage in the first leg at Parkhead. I think most teams would lose to PSG and Bayern.


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