'Completely overwhelming' - John Sutton on the huge challenge Celtic must overcome in CL tie
Former St Johnstone striker John Sutton has claimed that the biggest issue Celtic will have to deal with in their upcoming Champions League clash with Alashkert is the heat.
The younger brother of former Hoops striker Chris played for the Perth side when they lost to the Armenian champions in 2015, and he believes that the Bhoys should win the tie but will need to overcome the extremely difficult conditions first.
“The heat there was incredible” he said, as quoted by the Daily Record.
“It does affect the game and the way you play. It’s so muggy the sweat is pouring out of you during the warm-up.
“Celtic will be used to the travelling and the conditions. They’ve already experienced long-haul treks to places such as Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan so it won’t cause them too many problems.
“Coping with the heat will be the big one.”
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The Hoops are set to travel to Armenia for the first leg of the tie on the 10th or 11th of July.
Football Insider verdict
The game has the potential of being very tricky indeed for the Hoops. Not only will they have to cope with the overwhelming heat, but it will be their first competitive game of football in almost two months. Brendan Rodgers will need to spend the next three weeks making sure that his side are up for the tie and will be looking for the Hoops to come away with a result which would make them favourites for the second leg. Normally you would expect the Hoops not to have that much trouble with the Armenian champions, but as John Sutton says, the heat could well become the biggest factor in the game. Rodgers will no doubt pick his strongest available side for the match, and will be expecting the like of Scott Brown and Kieran Tierney to get the Hoops a decent result in what could be a very hard 90 minutes for the Bhoys as their Champions League adventure begins.
In other Celtic news, fans have delivered their verdict on the CL draw